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'Jail culture a time bomb'

Grafton jail at night.
Grafton jail at night. JoJo Newby

GRAFTON is reeling from the news that 100 more jobs are about to be ripped from the community.

Yesterday the Department of Corrective Services announced a savage restructure of the Grafton Jail which would strip all but 60 beds from the 240-bed facility.

Unions representing jail workers have done the sums and come up with 100 jobs lost in both custodial and ancillary services.

"Smashed. We've been smashed," said one warder after sitting through yesterday's meeting where Assistant Commissioner Col Kelleher announced the cuts.

"This is far worse than anything we expected. We thought maybe 50% job cuts would be bad. But this is just devastating."

However, Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis has defended the decision and blamed the previous Labor Government for allowing the jail to reach such a low point.

Mr Gulaptis yesterday described the jail as a time bomb waiting to go off, harbouring a culture of bullying and harassment among staff and inmates.

He claimed a confidential report into the prison said there were 11 staff who should have been disciplined for bullying and harassing inmates and other staff.

Topics:  chris gulaptis, department of corrective services, grafton jail, retrenchments


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