Correctional Workers March on State Capitol

OLYMPIA, Wash. - Hundreds of Teamster correctional workers, their families, community allies, and other Teamster members rallied on the steps of the state Capitol in Olympia yesterday in an effort to stop the cuts that they say are endangering the lives of prison workers and our communities.  Teamsters Local 117 represents more than 6,000 correctional workers throughout the state.

Waving signs reading, “Safety, Dignity, and Respect for Correctional Employees,” prison workers from 13 Washington state institutions, many of whom traveled on buses from cities as far away as Monroe, Walla Walla, Spokane, the Tri-Cities, and Clallam Bay, marched from Sylvester Park in Olympia and around the Capitol before assembling for a noontime rally. 

Contingents of corrections workers met with legislators in their offices throughout the day on Thursday to inform them of the dangers of the cuts. They also presented the governor with a list of proposed cost-saving measures that the state can implement at the Department of Corrections (DOC) without compromising safety.

DOC to Pay $4 Million for Assault on Inmate

SHELTON, Wash. - The Department of Corrections has agreed to pay $4 million to a former offender who sustained permanent, severely disabling injuries when he was assaulted by his cellmate at Washington Corrections Center near Shelton in 2006.

Ryan Alwine, 26, was hospitalized and remained in a coma for nearly four months following the attack. The incident occurred in the early morning on September 7, 2006.

“Our deepest sympathies go out to Ryan for the pain and suffering he has endured,” said DOC Secretary Eldon Vail. “This settlement will enable him to continue receiving the medical and rehabilitative care he needs for his lifetime following this senseless, violent act.”  

Washington State Penitentiary Receives Award for Supporting Staff Members Deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan

WALLA WALLA - The Washington State Penitentiary today received the "Above and Beyond" award from the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) Committee for its exceptional support of staff members who serve in the National Guard and Reserve.

The ESGR is a Department of Defense agency that was established to promote cooperation and understanding between Reserve members and their employers and to assist with conflicts that arise during an employee's military commitment.