©2011 Galesburg Broadcasting Co.
|Unions Clash Over Thomson Prison Plan
|Unions are usually in favor of job creation, but not when their members are cut out of the deal by another union.
The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, the labor union that represents prison guards at state facilities, is against the sale of Thomson Prison to the federal government.
Citing overcrowding at prisons across the state, AFSCME members told members of the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability that the state should keep Thomson and open the facility up to full capacity.
Henry Bayer, executive director AFSME Council 31, adds that the sale of Thomson is not only unfair to the 78 people working there now but also to the over 200 people who were hired with a promise of a job at Thomson but "are now scattered throughout the state because Thomson didn't open."
Tony Ferranto, president AFSCME Local 1175 at Menard Correctional Center, says overcrowding, bad food and gradual cuts on social services and recreation means a riot is brewing and action to stop that possibility must happen now.
If the federal government were to take over the prison, those federal prison guards would be represented by the American Federation of Government Employees, leaving AFSCME members currently at the prison with the option to be trained and join AFGE or to stick with AFSCME and accept Illinois Department of Corrections jobs at other facilities.
IDOC Director Michael Randle says there will be job opening available for those who wish to relocate to nearby state prisons.
The federal government has tapped Thomson as the location to house Guantanamo Bay detainees as President Obama looks to shut that military prison.
(Illinois Radio Network)
|12 24 09 by Newsroom
Click here for the WGIL News Archive
Click here for national news
The following provision applies to all visitors (which shall include persons and representatives of legal entities, whether such representatives are persons or digital engines of a kind that crawls, indexes, scrapes, copies, stores or transmits digital content). By accessing this Web site or digital service, you specifically acknowledge and agree that: (i) Associated Press text, photo, graphic, audio and/or video material shall not be published, broadcast, rewritten for broadcast or publication or redistributed directly or indirectly in any medium; (ii) No Associated Press materials nor any portion thereof may be stored in a computer except for personal and non-commercial use; (iii) The Associated Press will not be held liable for any delays, inaccuracies, errors or omissions therefrom or in the transmission or delivery of all or any part thereof or for any damages arising from any of the foregoing; (iv) The Associated Press is an intended third party beneficiary of these terms and conditions and it may exercise all rights and remedies available to it; and (v) The Associated Press reserves the right to audit possible unauthorized commercial use of AP materials or any portion thereof at any time.