Jobs, Training and Facilities, Rehabilitation

CIM facility renovation also teaches skilled trades

Skilled trades program participants renovated a healthcare room, now updated and modern.
The healthcare area at CIM received an upgrade while also teaching program participants job skills.

(Editor’s note: In honor of National Skilled Trades Day, Inside CDCR takes a closer look at a recent CIM renovation project.)

The health care facility at California Institution for Men (CIM), Facility A, Building 377, received an upgrade while providing incarcerated persons hands-on training that can lead to professional certificates and career skills they can use upon release.

The Inmate/Ward Labor program (I/WL) renovated the 61-year-old, 3,200 square foot clinic in four-and-a half months.

They added new acoustic ceilings, vinyl flooring, security lighting, paint, cabinets and countertops with sinks. Plumbing fixtures in exam rooms were replaced and cubicles added to allow space for furniture.

This is a real plus for the institution. Now A-Yard (where the building is located) has two medical clinics so clinicians and providers can see patients in a more private and spacious setting.

California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) Architect Mark Grexton designed the project, Construction Supervisor Nathan Townsend supervised, and six skilled craftsmen directed the work of 16 incarcerated individuals from the various trades programs at CIM.

“First and foremost, this was a collaborated effort with a hardworking, professional, committed group of individuals,” said CIM Medical CEO Louis Escobell. “I/WL has always kept our operational concerns as a priority and have worked closely together to assist in completing these projects on time,” he said.

The I/WL Program was established within CDCR in 1983 under Penal Code §2816. The I/WL is directly involved with new construction, renovation, and repair of CDCR’s facilities and primarily consists of incarcerated individuals and skilled casual trades personnel under the supervision of CDCR staff. This approach provides incarcerated individuals with meaningful work and training in construction trades that develop marketable job skills they can use when they are released from prison.

During their time working on I/WL construction projects, incarcerated individuals receive on-the-job training in various vocational trades such as concrete, masonry, carpentry, electrical, plumbing, sheet metal, and iron working. They may also earn certifications in the use and application of materials such as welding, fire caulking, and epoxy flooring. In addition to developing skills with construction materials and tools, incarcerated individuals may also become certified to operate construction equipment such as forklifts, reach lifts, boom lifts, scissor lifts, and skid steers.

“I/WL’s commitment to excellence is evident in their end product. Our clinics, our staff and our patient population have benefited and will benefit for years to come,” Escobell said.

By Joe Orlando
Office of Public and Employee Communications

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