"The statistics speak for themselves, but now it’s time for your voice to be heard." — BCGEU
Vancouver (14 Feb. 2017) — Violence in B.C.’s prisons is on the rise. Correctional officers work in conditions that are stressful, dangerous, and sometimes life-threatening.
Minister doesn't see safety as issue for correctional workers
Yet Mike Morris, B.C.’s Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General, dismisses safety concerns in the province’s correctional centres. In 2016, during Question Period in the legislature, he stated that, “Safety is not an issue in any of the correctional centres we have in BC” (see 31:01 mins).
In a recent interview with Radio NL in Kamloops, Minister Morris said "there seems to be a significant difference between how the government and union define an assault."
Dean Purdy, Component Vice-President of the B.C. Government and Service Employees' Union (BCGEU/NUPGE) will meet with the Minister in Victoriain March to discuss this in greater detail.
Prison Safety Now campaign encourages members to share personal experiences of violence in prison system
In the meantime, BCGEU/NUPGE is asking for help to inform Minister Morris about the very real, dangerous issues in B.C.’s jails.
The BCGEU/NUPGE letter-writing campaign says, "It’s time for the Minister to understand and acknowledge that prison safety is a serious issue. Our provincial prisons are increasingly violent for both the inmates and our members who work there. The statistics alone prove that violence is on the rise: assaults on correctional officers rose by 39 per cent between 2014 and 2015 and they are projected to rise by another 21.5 per cent by the end of 2016."
"The statistics speak for themselves, but now it’s time for your voice to be heard," says BCGEU/NUPGE.
The BCGEU/NUPGE is asking members to share stories of their personal experiences of prison violence. Confidentiality will be guaranteed. Any names, along with any other personal information, will be removed and the stories will be sent directly to Minister Morris.
Send stories to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have any questions about the Prison Safety Now campaign, contact email@example.com.
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 370,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE