Week in Review

CDCR Week in Review: December 2, 2022

From the Secretary’s Office

CDCR collecting food and supplies for neighbors in need

Flyer listing food items, a man stands in front of a homeless shelter

The Office of the Secretary is pleased to announce that 1515 S Street (Headquarters) is partnering with the River City Food Bank (RFBC) to provide food items/supplies to families in need for the holidays. RFBC is Sacramento’s oldest, continuously serving food bank whose mission is to alleviate hunger in Sacramento County by providing healthy emergency food and other assistance offering referrals and promoting self-sufficiency through various programs.

In an effort to assist RFBC in this mission, we have placed one barrel in the North building lobby, one box on the third floor of the North building, and one box on the third floor of the South building that will be used for collecting donations through January 3, 2023.

View the supply drive flyer and food drive flyer to learn what food items/supplies are needed and how to donate virtually. For any questions regarding this holiday food item/supply drive, please contact Sahra Rasool at Sahra.Rasool@cdcr.ca.gov.


Division of Juvenile Justice

At 91, DJJ volunteer has no plans to stop

Woman in purple turtleneck and maroon jacket.

It was 1989 when teacher Grace Martinez, nearing retirement, began looking to volunteer in the community, eventually choosing youth at the Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ).

She found her calling at the Ventura Youth Correctional Facility (VCYF) in Camarillo, in the surrogate parent program in which she legally stood in for parents of youth who had no one in order to make key educational decisions.

Thirty-three years later, the 91-year-old is still at it as a dedicated volunteer tutor, mentor, and officer in the Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) at VYCF. Read the full story.


ISUDT

Incarcerated people listen to a guest speaker in a gym.

SCC celebrates graduates’ accomplishments

Sierra Conservation Center (SCC) facilitated its first Integrated Substance Use Disorder Treatment ISUDT) graduation. Ninety participants successfully completed either the Cognitive Behavioral Interventions Outpatient or Life Skills course to attend the graduation.

In November, the SCC ISUDT Ambassador Team also hosted its first staff event booth, which was well received. The team made donations in the form of gift cards, cords of wood, candy, and more. The team created a prize wheel and more than 100 staff visited the booth and had an opportunity to take a fun quiz about ISUDT. If staff answered the questions correctly, it afforded them a chance to spin the wheel and win prizes. It was a day full of laughter, education and fun for all.

A group of people at a booth decorated with balloons that reads "ISUDT"

The graduation was well represented by staff from SCC’s health care teams, case records, custody staff and managers. SCC had three Offender Mentor Certification Program speakers. This was followed by staff guest speakers Ramona Canady, Supervisor for Center Point, Correctional Counselor III Byron Davis and SCC Warden Patrick Eaton. Each speaker was inspiring and supportive of the accomplishments of the graduates. SCC even had surprise entertainment to celebrate – Center Point staff member Renee Willis played the guitar and sang an inspiring song. All attendees were treated to sandwiches, cupcakes, chips and a drink at the end of the ceremony. Congratulations to all the graduates!


In our Institutions

A group of people eat lunch at a table outside

SCC celebrates staff

Sierra Conservation Center (SCC) hosted Employee Appreciation Day 2022, an event sponsored by the administration, the Employee and Community Benefit Association (ECBA) nonprofit, and various employee organizations to include the Correctional Peace Officers Association (CCPOA), California Correctional Supervisors Organization (CCSO) and Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1000. 

Food was cooked on-site by members of the management team and provided to all staff on all three watches. Management hosted several activities, including a live band, car show, bake-off and salsa-off contests.

The food consisted of pulled pork sandwiches, chicken thighs, coleslaw, macaroni salad, various desserts and beverages. Staff ate, conversed, laughed and enjoyed a day dedicated to them.

WSP shows holiday spirit

Three officers in uniform stand by the open trunk of a vehicle full of Thanksgiving baskets

According to W. Clement Stone, “If you are really thankful, what do you do? You share.” And, that is exactly what Wasco State Prison – Reception Center staff did. They shared their gratitude by blessing others in the city of Wasco with Thanksgiving food baskets.

A total of 187 food baskets were delivered to families needing a helping hand this holiday. Referrals were received from the Wasco Senior Center and the Wasco Union Elementary School District. It was the largest amount of referrals received to date which only motivated Warden Heather Shirley to step up to the challenge.

Various departments volunteered to participate in a departmental food basket decorating contest that resulted in 32 beautiful food baskets that were delivered to senior citizens with the rest being assembled by the Community Resource Manager and staff. The other Thanksgiving food baskets were assembled with food from the institutional food drive bin where staff donated various food items for the baskets.

CCWF spruces up visiting rooms for holiday

A woman in a hi-viz vest stands in front of a big turkey made out of colorful paper

The population at Central California Women’s Facility (CCWF) came together to decorate the family visiting rooms for the Thanksgiving holiday.

On the special visiting day, festivities included face painting for the children. Community Resources Manager Courtney Waybright and Custody Captain Gene Norman coordinated the decorations and enlisted the population to get creative. Both shared they are always impressed with the creativity and efforts put into decorations every holiday at CCWF.


Victims’ Services

The Office of Victim and Survivor Rights and Services (OVSRS) is proud to be a member of the California Victim Services State Agency Coordination Council. The council was formed to bring together state entities that are involved in victim services to coordinate state-level crime victim services through leveraging existing mechanisms for victim resources as well as expansion of outreach.

Agencies involved in the council include the California Victim Compensation Board (CalVCB), the California Attorney General’s Office, California Office of Emergency Services (CalOES) and the Secretary of State’s Office. The council collectively gathered information and posted the resources for victims to utilize on the CalVCB website (State Services for Victims of Crime – CA Victim Compensation Board) and it also linked from the CDCR website.

OVSRS continues to be dedicated in partnering with fellow state agencies to bring crime victims all information and resources available in California.


CCJBH

Full council meeting set

The December 9 Full Council Meeting of the Council on Criminal Justice and Behavioral Health (CCJBH) will feature a presentation on the Alameda County Justice Restoration Project (ACJRP). The meeting takes place from 2-4:30 p.m.

The Executive Officer will present and call for votes on proposed MHSA Stakeholder funding RFPs concepts and 2023 Meeting Schedule and Project Plans (as outlined in the agenda). Subject to available time, CCJBH staff will present “Year-in-Review”, and provide project updates during the meeting.

The agenda is now available on the CCJBH website. This agenda contains the Zoom link and call-in information. 

Juvenile Justice Workgroup rescheduled

The Juvenile Justice Workgroup has been rescheduled and will take place from 1-3 p.m. December 12. Register here.

The CCJBH team will provide an update on the Juvenile Justice Compendium and Toolkit contract with the RAND Corporation. The CCJBH team will provide an overview of the 2022 Annual Legislative Report findings and recommendations related to the juvenile justice system in California. The agenda is available on the CCJBH website

Note: The Diversion Reentry Workgroup will remain scheduled for December 16, 2022, from 3-5 p.m. Register here.


In the Media

‘The 50’: This dad became one of first incarcerated drug counselors

Cameron Clark was 13 years old when he was indoctrinated into the Compton Crips, given a handgun and started selling drugs.

After learning the various quantities of marijuana sold and amount for each, he says he stood outside until 12:30 at night. He recalls he made $500.

“I slept on the living room floor,” Clark, 47, tells TODAY.com. “The street light was shining a beam of light through the living room. I reached into my pocket, pulled out the money, put it in the light and counted it. And I just started crying — that was the cost of my innocence.”

At 15, Clark was found guilty of being an accessory to second degree murder and was sentenced to life in prison. It was while incarcerated that Clark says he finally faced his family’s generational cycle of abuse and, as a result, became one of the first imprisoned substance abuse counselors in the country.

Now, in a new film called “The 50,” about the first group of men to become counselors while in California prisons, Clark is sharing his story. Read the full story.

The 1000 Mile Running Club at San Quentin

It was a Monday afternoon in February of 2016, and I met up with the other volunteer running coaches of the 1000 Mile Club outside the East Gate of San Quentin State Prison in Marin County. This was my first day and I was nervous as I had never been inside a prison before. The coaches reassured me and put me at ease. We signed in, showed our ID, then made our way through the gate and past the prison administrative buildings to the highly-secured main entryway. We signed in again, had our ID

We were now inside the prison. We made our way past a beautifully manicured garden, turned right at the medical building, then left down the asphalt roadway and into the prison yard. It was a chilly evening and the wind swept in from the Bay. Hundreds of incarcerated men were milling about and involved in all sorts of activities, including running along the white-lined track that navigates the perimeter of the yard. 

The men in the club were gathered at the far end of the prison yard next to the baseball field. I found them to be open and welcoming, and I proceeded to shake hands and introduce myself to them one by one, which worked to put me at ease. I was frankly surprised by how cordial and kind they were to me. Read the full story.


Social Media

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