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The Politics of a Prison Riot Managing the Future of Public Safety in New Mexico Leadership New Mexico April 10, 2014 PowerPoint Presentation
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The Politics of a Prison Riot Managing the Future of Public Safety in New Mexico Leadership New Mexico April 10, 2014. Introduction. Instructor Development Teachings – Know your audience and allow them to get to know you. Audience – Leaders from a variety of disciplines and jurisdictions,

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The Politics of a Prison RiotManaging the Future of Public Safety in New MexicoLeadership New MexicoApril 10, 2014
introduction
Introduction

Instructor Development Teachings – Know your audience and allow them to get to know you.

      • Audience – Leaders from a variety of disciplines and jurisdictions,
      • FOLKS INSPIRED TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
      • As the Cabinet Secretary for the New Mexico Department of Corrections, I stand today as a fellow who has spent over 32 years of my life locking folks up and prosecuting them. I certainly now find that to not be so easy!
  • My personal sense of purpose and regard to be here today?
    • For me my career is now about God’s blessings (my obligation to pay them forward) and certainly NOT the result of a position or appointment.
        • Cajun Gumbo Anecdote (Destined for the oil refineries of SWLA)
    • No gimmicks: (I believe in what we will talk about today with all my

heart!)

slide5

As I’ve transitioned from locking the up to the role of overseer, here’s what I know:

    • This next phase of my public safety career, there will be no shortages of challenges.
  • At this point, leadership is more key to my role as Secretary of Corrections than technical competence.
  • For all of us in leadership roles (regardless of profession, company or industry), the abundance of challenges will not be the issue.
  • It will be truly how we choose to respond to them.
slide6

Maitre de - This is certainly be my case as I have transitioned my role from maître de to overseerbut I now believe that if I play my cards right now, not only will I truly respect my prior service, but I will also seize an opportunity to impact the safety and security of our neighborhoods in a more meaningful way.

  • My definition of WISDOM:
    • The education and experience that has is provided us must now be at some translated into some meaningful behavior if it is to be useful.
  • I was appointed to take what I have learned and manage the future. But to do so, I must appreciate the past and. present equally. In our brief time together, let’s look at a snapshot of the NMCD.
    • The past; the conditions and challenges of present AND; the future.
new mexico corrections department past
New Mexico Corrections Department Past
  • The NMCD history is most notable for the February 02, 1980 riot that has been characterized by few heroes, plenty of villains and many victims. Such is a description of the most violent and tragic in American history.
  • It is without parallel in the penal history of the USA for its brutality, destruction, and disorganization among rioters.
new mexico corrections department past1
New Mexico Corrections Department Past
  • On that cold February 2nd night, at approximately 0140, the riot began when prisoners overpowered four guards, grabbed their keys and broke into the long corridor connecting eight prison buildings .
  • Within 22 minutes, inmates had control of the entire prison and held 12 guards hostage.
new mexico corrections department past2
New Mexico Corrections Department Past
  • In the 36 hours it took to regain control of the institution:
      • 36 inmates were killed by other inmates (12 were first tortured and mutilated).
      • The exact number injured during the riots remains unknown but is estimated that as many as 200 were beaten and raped. We know that at least 90 inmates were treated at local hospitals for conditions ranging from overdoses to physical injuries.
      • 7 of the 12 corrections officers who were taken hostage were beaten, stabbed, and/or sodomized, though none were murdered.
      • No inmates or hostages were killed during the retaking of the prison.
new mexico corrections department past3
New Mexico Corrections Department Past
  • Previously characterized by Senator Jeff Bingaman (AG that issued the report on the riot) as “an inmate rebellion without a plan”.
  • In many ways, the riot could be considered a reflection of the leadership of the “overseers” because it occurred without leadership and without well planned goals.
new mexico corrections department past4
New Mexico Corrections Department Past
    • Certainly, the lack of leadership at the “Old Main” and the NMCD as a whole could never excuse the butchery of the riot.
      • Nor could the mismanaged informant system justify or explain the indiscriminate mutilation of the dead.
      • The murderers and torturers of the riot certainly brought their own darkness and evils to the penitentiary those 36 fateful hours.
  • On the other hand, if we were to sum up the pre-riot conditions that led to the riot, we would center our discussion on a lack of balance between activities aimed to assure compliance of rules and order (security and social control) and legitimate activities aimed at reinforcing pro-social behavior (programming and social support).

Social Control

Social Support

new mexico corrections department past5
New Mexico Corrections Department Past
    • Management practices myopically centered on coercion alone can (at much expense) keep order but produce inmates who are not ready to become productive citizens.
  • The conditions cited became a perfect storm that bred anger and rage among inmates creating the opportunity for anger and rage to be openly expressed in the riot.
      • In essence, the overseers took their eye off the ball!
        • (NMCD leadership, Governor, Legislature)
new mexico corrections department present
New Mexico Corrections Department Present
  • Presently, the NMCD is responsible of the safety and security of:
    • 6500 to 7000 Inmates held in 10 prisons statewide .
    • 6 public facilities and 5 private facilities
new mexico corrections department present1
New Mexico Corrections Department Present
  • At any given time, we are supervising roughly 18 to 19K offenders on parole or probation in our neighborhoods.
    • 42 PPD offices statewide
  • Roughly 2500 employees and on about a 290 million dollar budget.
new mexico corrections department present2
New Mexico Corrections Department Present
  • The September call from the Governor.
    • Mission Statement
    • My observations.
    • My greatest surprises
  • What I quickly learned:
    • Succession Planning
      • USMC J.O.B. Inspections
    • Organization rigidly dependent upon centralized decision making and processes.

God…Governor, you both got me into this. I’m trusting you both to see me through it!

new mexico corrections department present3
New Mexico Corrections Department Present
  • The September call from the Governor.
    • Mission Statement
    • My observations.
    • My greatest surprises
  • What I quickly learned:
    • Succession Planning
      • USMC J.O.B. Inspections
    • Organization rigidly dependent upon centralized decision making and processes.

God…Governor, you both got me into this. I’m trusting you both to see me through it!

of all inmates in the custody of the nmcd at this moment
Of all inmates in the custody of the NMCD at this moment…

How many will be released?

Of all inmates that will be released…

How many are currently predicted to reoffend and return to prison?

new mexico corrections department the challenges
New Mexico Corrections Department The Challenges
  • Corrections as a culture
  • Staff are underpaid.
  • High vacancy rates.
  • Staff retention, skills training, and succession planning requires improvement.
  • Aging physical infrastructure.
  • The increased public demand on more punitive sanctions tends to hinder the development of creative programming solutions for reducing recidivism.
  • Unrealistic expectations that the public safety community can solve the problems alone. Specifically, once an offender is sentenced, corrections is expected to redress the long standing shortcomings of our systems of education, economy, and social inequities.
new mexico corrections department the challenges1
New Mexico Corrections Department The Challenges
  • Public confidence in the criminal justice system is fragile and a general intolerance for any failure exists.
  • Incarceration is an expensive undertaking and we confront strained economic conditions.
  • The community has a right to better understand the corrections profession and leaders in the field have been less inclined to involve themselves in an active role in the development of public policy.
  • There is a growing demand for government to become more effective and efficient...to be more open to scrutiny and accountable.
new mexico corrections department keeping our eye on the ball
New Mexico Corrections Department Keeping Our Eye on the Ball
  • Leadership, Leadership, Leadership
    • Everything rises and falls on it.
    • Our outcomes are simply the result of what we create or what we accept.
  • Centering what we do on shared core values and an understanding of our mission that truly guides organizational behavior.
  • A firm adoption of the notion that offenders are responsible for their behavior and have a potential to be so.
  • Effective corrections practices and programs involving greater community collaboration...folks just like many of you.
new mexico corrections department keeping our eye on the ball1
New Mexico Corrections Department Keeping Our Eye on the Ball
  • Carefully recruited, properly trained, and well informed staff are essential.
  • CHANGE IS NECESSARY AND INEVITABLE. The future success is ultimately about a corrections community that is fully engaged and capable of responding the necessary change required to shape the future.
new mexico corrections department the future
New Mexico Corrections Department The Future
  • The very essence of my role is therefore to clearly establish and articulate a vision.
    • You can’t blow an uncertain trumpet.
  • The role of strategic planning is creating a future.
new mexico corrections department the future1
New Mexico Corrections Department The Future
    • Building awareness and trust for what we do.
    • Assertive Public Affairs Program (the GOOD and the BAD)
  • Code of Ethics and other policy that are relevant, necessary, and purposeful.
  • The Academy – Succession Planning (USMC JOB Inspections), Recruiting and Retention
  • Recidivism Reduction Strategies
    • From the standpoint of my background, when I speak of recidivism reduction strategies, I mean PUBLIC SAFETY….solutions for the safety and security of the neighborhoods our families live in.
new mexico corrections department the future2
New Mexico Corrections Department The Future
  • The most valuable lesson of the haunted cell blocks that now stand in memory of February 2, 1980?
    • Human nature is indomitable!
  • The evils manifested in those 36 hours should never be allowed to completely disappear.
  • Our history must be respected by our willingness to pursue systemic progress, a better understanding of man, and our responsibility to purposefully lead them.
social control
Social Control
  • The GAR Instrument
  • Contraband Control
  • Predator –v- Prey Lock-ups
  • Reorganization of Records and Classification Unit
  • Good Time Awards Policy Changes
social support philosophy
Social Support Philosophy?
  • Getting Ready (Prison Phase)
  • Going Home (Transition Phase)
  • Staying Home (Supervision Phase)
slide33

Lost in the Jemez

  • Without a point of origin,
  • even the best map is
  • useless!
  • Your smart phone GPS.
  • Isn’t this the case with so
  • many of our lives?
  • Most of us, when it comes
  • to figure out where we
  • are headed in life, never
  • stop to ask the question
  • of WHY in our lives.
nmcd s golden circle approach
NMCD’s Golden Circle Approach
  • Every organization on the face of the planet, each of yours…each profession…our own careers…even our personal lives function on 3 levels:
    • Why we do what we do;
    • How we do it, and;
    • What we do.
    • We believe that it’s this simple idea that best inspires change and excellence for the future of NMCD.
the simple truths
The Simple Truths
  • Every single person and/or organization on the planet knows WHAT they do.
  • Some know HOW they do it.
  • But very, very few people or organizations truly know WHY they do what they do!
the story of my why
The Story of My WHY
  • Since that time, I have been blessed for many years to work with many of you, and many like you.- men and women who love their work.
    • I am convinced this is the case that each of you and those like you feel that you are where you belong.
    • You feel that you are doing what you are called to do. You feel purpose.
    • You understand and respect your WHY!
  • For me, it was NOT an intellectual or academic pursuit.
    • My original sense of WHY:
      • The white recliner.
    • 6 years later it was a darker time in my life, following my Father’s death when I had fallen out of love with my work as a young cop.
    • The problem was not the quality of my work. I just didn’t feel it anymore.
    • The “calling” verses reality.
our question of why and you
Our Question of WHY and You?
  • The creation of OMS to ensure the accuracy of inmate releases.
  • Inmate programming has been thoroughly reviewed to ensure good time credits are earned appropriately (the Carlos Fierro case uncovered issues and provided us an opportunity to improve).
  • There are positive changes to enhance the reentry efforts for inmates releasing back to the community. This creates safer communities and potentially no more victims.
  • The Department is now using only evidence-based programming for inmates that increases the opportunities for offenders to live productive, healthy lives as contributing and crime free members of the community.
  • Continued commitment and effort to serve and enhance services to crime victims by supporting and recognizing the importance of victim notification and the victim’s statutory right to notification (VINE).
  • Restorative justice efforts, specifically, victim-offender dialogue at NMCD. 
    • Currently there is a pilot project for victim-offender dialogue which will expand the services provided by Victim Services  (The Checklely case will open the doors for the future development of victim-offender dialogue at NMCD).
slide39

Thank each and every one of you for pursing your own callings or purposes.

  • God has truly blessed you and I pray will continue to do so in every way as you enter your own careers.
  • Semperfidelis.....be safe!

Gregg Marcantel

Secretary of Corrections

New Mexico Corrections Department

P.O. Box 27116

Santa Fe, NM 87502-0116

505.827.8884