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Benedict Center Action!: House of Corrections Victory

Congratulations and Thank You to everyone involved in our successful take back of the House of Corrections.  

Wednesday, November 14 we received the news that County Executive Chris Abele had declined to Veto the Board Approved ‘Harris Amendment’ to the FY2013 Budget. This amendment transfers power over the House of Corrections (County Correctional Facility-South) from Sherif David A. Clarke, Jr. to a new superintendent that will report to the the County Executives Office.

We will continue to work with engaged community members, partnering community organizations, and County leadership to work toward the restoration of rehabilitative programing for all inmates, the improving of access to the Huber Work Release Program, and restoration of incarceration alternatives like Electronic Monitoring and the Day Reporting Center.

We want to extend a special thanks to Everyone who called their County Supervisors to encourage them to vote for the ‘Harris Amendment,’ and all those who called County Executive Chris Abele to encourage him not to veto the amendment after it was passed by the County Board.  Your Voices where Heard!

We also want to thank those community organizations that we partnered with in this effort, including: Wisconsin Community Services, MICAH (Milwaukee Inner-city Congregations Allied for Hope), and Disability Rights.

We would like to encourage you to call your County Supervisors and thank them for their votes as well as the County Executive for upholding the amendment from veto.

 

District 1, Theodore Lipscomb, 278-4257, Theodore.Lipscomb@milwcnty.com

 

District 2, Nikiya Harris, 278-4278, nikiya.harris@milwcnty.com

 

District 3, Gerry Broderick, 278-4237, gerry.broderick@milwcnty.com

 

District 4, Marina Dimitrijevic, 278-4232, marina.dimitrijevic@milwcnty.com

 

District 5, Russell Stamper II, 278-4261, Russell.stamper@milwcnty.com

 

District 8, Patricia Jursik, 278-4231, patricia.jursik@milwcnty.com

 

District 10, David Bowen, 278-4265, david.f.bowen@milwcnty.com

 

District 11, Mark Borkowski, 278-4253, mark.borkowski@milwcnty.com

 

District 12, Peggy West, 278-4269, peggy.west@milwcnty.com

 

District 13, Willie Johnson Jr., 278-4233,  willie.johnson@milwcnty.com

 

District 14, Jason Haas, 278-4252, Jason.haas@milwcnty.com

 

District 15, David Cullen, 278-4263, david.cullen@milwcnty.com

 

District 16, John Weishan, Jr., 278-4255, john.weishan@milwcnty.com

 

District 18, Deanna Alexander, 278-4259, deanna.alexander@milwcnty.com

Benedict Center Action Alert: Call County Executive Today!

Benedict Center Action Alert: Call County Executive Today! 

Please call the County Executive, Chris Abele, and urge him to uphold the Harris Amendment to restore a Superintendent to the County Correctional Facility – South (CCF-S).

On Monday, November 5th, the County Board of Supervisors voted for and passed the amendment proposed by County Supervisor Nikyia Harris and supported by the Benedict Center along Wisconsin Community Services (WCS), MICAH, and other community agencies.

Thank you!  This would not have been possible without your phone calls, e-mails, and support!

The Harris Amendment to the 2013 County Budget will restore a Superintendent to oversee the House of Corrections, now called the County Correctional Facility-South CCF-S).  CCF-S is currently under the direction of the Sheriff.  This superintendent will improve public health and public safety by implementing and restoring evidence based programs and practices, including AODA treatment, employment training, community based alternatives like Electronic Monitoring, the Huber Facility and the Day Reporting Center.

The transfer of leadership will occur in April of 2013, if Harris Amendment is upheld by the County Executive! 

The amended budget must be submitted to the County Executive, Chris Abele, for final approval.  Abele was quoted in a recent Journal Sentinel Article that he intends to veto amendments to the budget, bringing closer to what he originally proposed.

Call Chris Abele and say, “Don’t veto the Harris Amendment to restore a Superintendent to the HOC.  It’s a matter of public safety, and we cannot wait another year to make this change!”

County Executive Chris Abele

901 N. 9th Street
Courthouse, Room 306
Milwaukee, WI 53233-1458
414-278-4211 /Fax: 414-223-1375

countyexec@milwcnty.com

Please let us know when you contact him so we can mark our progress.

If you have any questions regarding this matter, please call Jeanne at 414.347.1774×202.

Benedict Center Action Alert:

Please call your County Supervisor and urge them to vote for the Harris Amendment to restore a Superintendent to the County Correctional Facility – South (CCF-S) when they vote on the County Budget this Monday, November 5, 2012.

The Harris Amendment to the 2013 County Budget will restore a Superintendent to oversee the House of Corrections, now called the County Correctional Facility-South CCF-S).  CCF-S is currently under the direction of the Sheriff.  This superintendent will improve public health and public safety by implementing and restoring evidence based programs and practices, including AODA treatment, employment training, community based alternatives like Electronic Monitoring, the Huber Facility and the Day Reporting Center.

This is a matter of public safety.   Individuals are sentenced to the House of Corrections/ CCF-S for one year or less, which means they come back to the community in a short period of time.  Evidence based practices and programs help individuals return to the community to live healthier, safer lives for themselves, their families and the community.

This is good fiscal sense.  While this amendment has a moderate price tag to make the transition successful, it will save money in the long run.

  • It will save the cost of recidivism and re-incarceration.
  • It will save the collateral costs to victims of crimes.
  • It will save the opportunity costs of sentenced individuals becoming contributing members to their families and their communities.

We cannot wait another year to make this change.  Since the Board moved the CCF-S to the Sheriff in 2009, he has worked against programming and alternatives:

  • Stripped away nearly all treatment and training programs, so there is no AODA treatment or job training for inmates.
  • Reduced the number of people on electronic monitoring from 200 to under 10 people.  (This is despite the fact that under his supervision, the compliance rate was actually quite high.)
  • Moved the Huber Work Facility to Franklin, where there is virtually no public transportation.
  • Effectively reduced the number of people receiving treatment at the Day Reporting Center

Milwaukee County Residents are being affected by this now.

  • Incarcerated individuals with mental illness and/or drug addiction are NOT getting the treatment they need to recover.
  • Individuals who could safely be placed in a community based alternative program like the Day Reporting Center via Electronic Monitoring  are separated from their families.
  • The community is needlessly subjected to released individuals committing crimes again because there was not treatment intervention.

The Sheriff has made his position clear.  He does not support evidence based programs and he will not cooperate with the other partners in the criminal justice system who have been working diligently in the past 2.5 years to ensure that Milwaukee County’s Criminal Justice System utilizes nationally recognized, scientifically based, best practices.  Another year will do further damage to the community.   He has stated he is not opposed to this transfer because managing the corrections operations of the House of Corrections is not part of the Sheriff’s core responsibilities.

We have the resources to implement an effective transition plan and be ready to go on January 1, 2013.

The Milwaukee County Community Justice Council has been working closely with the National Institute of Correction’s Evidence Based Decision Making Initiative (EBDM) and has a proven track record of making sound policy and infrastructure changes in our criminal justice system in the past 2.5 years. (http://milwaukee.gov/cjc).   We have local expertise and access to national expertise to identify a qualified candidate for the Superintendent position and to support that individual make a successful transition

*Final Note: The County did not require a studied plan to transfer control to the Sheriff in 2009.

Milwaukee County Elected Officials – Contact Information
County Executive Chris Abele901 N. 9th Street
Courthouse, Room 306
Milwaukee, WI 53233-1458

414-278-4211 /Fax: 414-223-1375

countyexec@milwcnty.com

Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors
Milwaukee County Courthouse
901 North 9th Street, RM 201
Milwaukee, WI 53233
Phone: 414-278-4222     Fax: 414-278-1380
Note: If you are not sure who your supervisor is, call the main number 278-4222.
District Supervisor Phone E-mail
1. Theodore Lipscomb 278-4257 Theodore.Lipscomb@milwcnty.com
2. Nikiya Harris 278-4278 nikiya.harris@milwcnty.com
3. Gerry Broderick 278-4237 gerry.broderick@milwcnty.com
4. Marina Dimitrijevic 278-4232 marina.dimitrijevic@milwcnty.com
5. Russell Stamper II 278-4261 Russell.stamper@milwcnty.com
6. Luigi Schmitt 278-4273 james.schmitt@milwcnty.com
7. Michael Mayo Sr. 278-4241 michael.mayo@milwcnty.com
8. Patricia Jursik 278-4231 patricia.jursik@milwcnty.com
9. Steve Taylor 278-4267 steve.taylor@milwcnty.com
10. David Bowen 278-4265 david.f.bowen@milwcnty.com
11. Mark Borkowski 278-4253 mark.borkowski@milwcnty.com
12. Peggy West 278-4269 peggy.west@milwcnty.com
13. Willie Johnson Jr. 278-4233 willie.johnson@milwcnty.com
14. Jason Haas 278-4252 Jason.haas@milwcnty.com
15. David Cullen 278-4263 david.cullen@milwcnty.com
16. John Weishan, Jr. 278-4255 john.weishan@milwcnty.com
17. Joe Sanfelippo 278-4247 joe.sanfelippo@milwcnty.com
18. Deanna Alexander 278-4259 deanna.alexander@milwcnty.com

At today’s finance committee meeting, the following Supervisors demonstrated bold leadership and supported the Amendment.    Please thank them and ask them to support the Harris Amendment again on Monday.

Supervisor Jursik

Supervisor Bowen (co-sponsor)

Supervisor Stamper (co-sponsor)

Supervisor Broderick (co-sponsor)

Sincerely,

Jeanne Geraci

Executive Director
Benedict Center
135 W. Wells Street
Milwaukee, WI 53203
414.347.1774 x202

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