Don’t politi­cize Ch­ester County Pri­son jobs

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - NEWS -

To the Ed­i­tor: I would like to take this op­por­tu­nity to shed some light on the cur­rent sit­u­a­tion at Ch­ester County Pri­son. We are cur­rently in­volved in a bat­tle over bring­ing in the Team­sters union. This is the third at­tempt by some of the of­fi­cers to in­tro­duce a union to the fa­cil­ity, both of the pre­vi­ous at­tempts failed due to lack of sup­port. De­spite these pre­vi­ous fail­ures the Team­sters seem de­ter­mined to pad their al­ready sig­nif­i­cant pay­roll with our hard earned money. There are many of us who do not want a union. While the rep­re­sen­ta­tion vote has yet to be sched­uled, it seems in­evitable.

The Team­sters ef­fort has cre­ated un­needed ten­sion and dis­sent among the ranks. And many of my fel­low of­fi­cers have won­dered why they are so in­tent on get­ting in here? It is not be­cause they care about us. They and more specif­i­cally Chris O’Don­nell, the or­ga­nizer, don’t know us or the job we do.

It is true that this job can be dif­fi­cult as can all jobs. There is also the po­ten­tial of dan­ger in our job, we are all made aware of this and ac­cept it when we take this job. Out­side of that po­ten­tial dan­ger this job is sim­i­lar to most jobs, it can be hec­tic and it can be mun­dane. It is true that our salary is less than neigh­bor­ing coun­ties, an is­sue which our ad­min­is­tra­tion is and has been work­ing to cor­rect. The facts be­ing pre­sented are not en­tirely true. Mont­gomery County cor­rec­tional of­fi­cers did not re­ceive a 16-25 per­cent raise, they re­ceived a 7.5 per­cent raise and con­tracted for 3 an­nual raises of 2.75 per­cent for a to­tal of 15.75 over four years, an of­fi­cer with sim­i­lar ten­ure to my own has seen an 18 per­cent in­crease over the last four years. Both Mont­gomery County and Berks County while be­ing paid more are also dras­ti­cally un­der­staffed. Berks County had an av­er­age daily pop­u­la­tion last year al­most 200 over ca­pac­ity, which was al­most 300 greater than Ch­ester County pri­son’s daily av­er­age pop­u­la­tion all while em­ploy­ing 30 less of­fi­cers than we do. Mont­gomery County’s in­mate to of­fi­cer ra­tio is dou­ble that of Ch­ester County. Dauphin County is also un­der­staffed by com­par­i­son, av­er­ag­ing 200 more in­mates and 30 less of­fi­cers. Perry County em­ploys 29 of­fi­cers to our 244, so it is much less of a bur­den on the tax­payer to af­ford their salary.

While I ap­pre­ci­ate Mr. Pielli’s praise, he has ob­vi­ous ties to the union and more im­por­tantly the Demo­cratic Party. While they have the lux­ury of en­gag­ing in political games those of us that work here want to no part of the pol­i­tics. Daniel Car­roll

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.