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With Mule Creek kitchens shorthanded, other staff stepped in to help

Custody, non-custody staff work together to fill need

By Lance Eshelman, Community Resource Manager

When many buildings at Mule Creek State Prison (MCSP) went on quarantine in December, Facilities D and E satellite kitchens were left without incarcerated support teams. To fulfill the basic needs of those kitchens, staff from various disciplines stepped up to feed the incarcerated population.

Chaplains of various faiths and educators from all fields were joined by custody line staff and supervisors to feed the incarcerated population.

“After more than 33 years in the Department, I can say MCSP’s staff are second to none,” said Warden Patrick Covello. “They have proven themselves invaluable time and time again, happily working outside their comfort area. I am extremely proud and appreciative of their dedication to the institution and CDCR.”

Working together during an emergency

Many employees saw it as a learning experience.

“Having worked at MCSP for less than a year, it was a great experience working on different yards in a different department,” said Teaching Assistant Tracy Meadows. “The staff who trained us and walked us through a completely foreign process did so with patience and humor. I have tremendous respect for the work they do.”

Many chaplains saw it as a way to demonstrate staff unity.

“In my 23 years at Mule Creek, this was the first time I got to help out in the kitchens with staff from all different professions,” said Chaplain Diogo Baptista. “The staff, no matter their regular jobs, cooperated to help where most needed in an emergency. Such spirit to work together is highly commendable.”

Learn more about MCSP employees (2019 story) and how to become a state employee.