NEW YORK, SEPT. 7, 2005--- In conjunction with the Secretary of the Louisiana State Correction Department, Richard Stalder, the New York City Department of Correction is today sending to Louisiana, a caravan consisting of correction officers with tractor trailers loaded with food and supplies to assist the Louisiana state correction officers who have been inundated as a result of Hurricane Katrina.
"We are very pleased to be able to assist our fellow correction officers and their families in Louisiana", said Martin Horn, Commissioner of the New York City Department of Correction.
"The state correction staff there has done a tremendous job in ensuring public safety while absorbing inmates into their jails from the areas devastated by the hurricane. I have spoken with the State Correction Secretary, Richard Stalder, who has requested this assistance from us and other correctional agencies.
"The men and women of the Louisiana correction system are working around the clock to maintain safety and services, but, as the Secretary said to me, they are literally falling off their feet. They need our help and we are glad we can give it."
"This is one of the worst natural disasters in our nation's history", said Norman Seabrook, president of the New York City Correction Officers' Benevolent Association, who immediately reached out to both the Louisiana and Mississippi State Correction Departments after the hurricane hit.
"The men and women of the COBA have always participated in relief efforts both in New York City after 9/11 and in response to natural disasters around the world. We're proud to do all that we can to help our brother and sister correction officers and their families who have been devastated by this catastrophe."
The Department of Correction is sending personnel and supplies in two waves. The first wave, leaving Rikers Island at 3 pm today, consists of 15 correction officers and two 18-wheeler trucks loaded with food, cots, clothing, and supplies. The remaining personnel (fifty uniformed staff), will depart from Rikers Island tomorrow.
Their mission is to head to a Louisiana State correction facility outside of Baton Rouge, where they will distribute food and supplies to the families of Louisiana state correction officers. In addition,
New York City correction officers will be assisting Louisiana State correction personnel with whatever relief they require, including, perimeter patrol, inmate transport, etc, at their facilities.
NEW YORK, SEPT. 23, 2005 --- The New York City Department of Correction sent 58 replacement staff to Louisiana at the request of the Louisiana State Correction Department. The officers departed from Kennedy and LaGuardia Airports.
With Hurricane Rita threatening Louisiana, jails in the southwest part of the state were being evacuated and on Sept. 22 Louisiana State Correction requested that officers from New York City Correction extend their stay for an additional two weeks.
The first group of 65 Correction Officers arrived in Louisiana September 9th. Twenty-three of this group were to arrive back at Rikers Island Sept. 24. Additional staff were to be rotated back as warranted.
Fourteen officers from the first group will be extended for two more weeks, for a total of 72 Correction Officers assisting Louisiana State Correction for two additional weeks. The Officers are providing security, transportation, evacuation and communication services to the Louisiana State Correction Department.
Before going to their flights to Luisiana, the officers assembled on Rikers Island for inoculations and assignment instructions.
On Sept. 22, two 18-wheel trucks loaded with relief supplies donated and/or collected by NYC DOC staffers departed from Rikers Island for Luisiana.