Working in detention/correction/prison/jail facilities is soul searing work at its best and in far too many facilities seem more like apocalyptic science fiction scenarios.
In my state women COs have experienced unrelenting harassment and assault at the hands of their COWORKERS with little or no accountability by the political powers that turn a blind eye. We know this because these women have successfully sued and won, which has been confirmed by our state auditor, who says it is bad, but the responsibility of the legislature to address. As in rape, large numbers of assaults and harassment simply lead to people quitting rather than deal with the public nature of asking for help.
When assaults of detained persons occur in facilities, the in-house medical staff and myriad security cameras fail to lead to prosecution, often leaving victims with permanent physical and mental injury. (When I asked one facility how reported sexual assaults are handled by the medical service contractor to support criminal prosecution, the answer was, "We have a contract for that so it is not our problem.") Such administrative willful ignorance exacerbates sexual harassment by creating an environment where good women and men are bullied into turning a blind eye or fleeing the facility as women and young people are assaulted, harassed and demeaned.
Low-level employees are held accountable for trafficking in drugs, phones and privileges while their supervisors and administrators up the line are rarely held accountable, or simply allowed to quit. When employees are awarded damages through the court systems, our political entities simply refuse to pay.
Really folks, how hard it is to understand that THERE IS NO CONSENT when a government employee or contractor has sexual contact with someone they are BEING PAID TO PROTECT, because that is absolutely the job of detention staff. The sentence of "90 days" or "20 years" is NOT "sentenced to rape, assault, broken health and broken minds." Prison employees who are assaulted on the job should not have LESS PROTECTIONS than those in the private sector.
And the current trend is to say "we raised the starting salary so that will fix the problems," even as we contract to send detained persons far from family contacts that have proven consistently to reduce recidivism (re-offending) significantly.
There are many points in the legal system where change is desperately needed, but in the name of basic fairness, we must advocate with our elected officials to demand changes to the culture of malignant neglect rampant in jails and prisons across the country.