Accomplishments in 2000

January 3, 2000

The agency's inception of the new community correction's model was implemented and formally named the Community Enforcement Unit. The model engages a cooperative effort among community and local law enforcement agencies for increased supervision of community offenders to allow for a greater opportunity for successful integration.

January 20, 2000

The agency began the Prison PUP (Puppies Uniting People) Partnership Program at York Correctional Institution in cooperation with NEADS (National Education for Assistance Dogs). Inmates participate in this program designed to train dogs in assisting the disabled.

February 1, 2000

The agency became an active partner in the One Voice Coalition, a New Haven based multi-jurisdictional task force of city, state and federal criminal justice agencies and local neighborhood groups. The program balances offender supervision and community needs to increase successful offender reintegration.

Department employees raised more than $6,000 for the March of Dimes, earning recognition for "Most Dollars Raised in Connecticut" and "Most Dollars Raised by a State Agency" from the organization.

The Social Security Administration reported that the Connecticut Department of Correction collected $227,000 through the incarcerated person's incentive program. The Federal Administration is authorized to suspend Social Security benefits when a person is incarcerated.

March 1, 2000

Commissioner John J. Armstrong began a three-phase process to reshape the agency's organization to further benefit from efficiencies of scale. The Programs Division became the Programs and Staff Development Division and the Administrative Division became Support Services Division.

March 14, 2000

Correctional Industries opened its new Metal Fabrication shop at the MacDougall Correctional Institution.

March 24, 2000

Correctional Enterprises constructed its new Dental Laboratory at the MacDougall Correctional Institution.

March 30, 2000

The Connecticut Commission on National and Community Services saluted Commissioner John J. Armstrong for his efforts on behalf of mentoring and applauded his dedication to positive youth development. The Department of Correction is the leading recruiter for Big Brothers/Big Sisters volunteerism under the Governor's State Employee Mentoring Programming.

April 5, 2000

Victim Services Unit reported that 150 offenders have completed the victim's awareness program called V.O.I.C.E.S. incorporated at the Gates Correctional Institution, Robinson Correctional Institution, Willard-Cybulski Correctional Institution, Manson Youth Institution and the York Correctional Institution. Connecticut is the only state that offers this program to females and youthful offenders. A total of 835 victim notifications have been processed.

April 30, 2000

The Community Enforcement Unit in collaboration with federal, state and local authorities returned 116 escapees from the community absconder list. Other efforts led to the success of: suspending 55 inmates' Social Security benefits; verifying 47 inmates as incarcerated in other states; identifying 81 escapees as deceased; and acquiring the use of the nation-wide database resulting in locating 373 subjects.

May 4, 2000

Inmate Parole Hearings were conducted for the first time via videoconferencing between Walker Reception and Special Management Unit and the New Haven Parole Office.

June 1, 2000

MacDougall Correctional Institution's Internal Classification Program was chosen by the National Institute of Corrections as a national model for other state correction departments to use as a reference.

June 7, 2000

Videoconferencing capabilities for court and parole proceedings expanded to the Cheshire Correctional Institution in Cheshire.

July 1, 2000

When comparing calendar 1994 with fiscal 1999-2000, escapes have plunged 100 percent, inmate-on-staff assaults have fallen 60 percent, inmate-on-inmate assaults have declined 47 percent, furlough violations have dropped 99 percent and inmate disciplines have dipped 33 percent despite the 21 percent increase in the inmate population, during that span.

The Community Enforcement Unit reported a 62 percent decrease in absconders from Transitional Supervision and a 46 percent decrease from halfway houses as compared to 1999.

Correctional Enterprises began its Fully Reflective License Plate Reissue Program at Cheshire Correctional Institution.

July 10, 2000

The agency officially opened the 11,424 square foot state-of-the-art Firing Range located at the Maloney Center for Training and Staff Development in Cheshire. The range design focuses on: its environmental compatibility; its safety with 60, 8 foot high concrete panels enclosing the perimeter; and being neighbor-friendly with enhanced sound panels. It also serves as a training facility for state and local police officers.

July 26, 2000

Commissioner John J. Armstrong launched a statewide expansion initiative by soliciting community cooperation in an effort to increase the number of high security celled beds by expansion, conversion or new construction.

August 9, 2000

The State Supreme Court upheld the agency's decision to use its discretion allowing inmates access to publications. The court held that the practice does not violate an inmate's First Amendment rights and recognized our agency's responsibility in preventing violence provoking literature.

September 15, 2000

The first case sanctioning inmates to pay the cost of their incarceration was awarded per Public Act 95-235. An inmate was ordered to pay the State of Connecticut $630,000 for his incarceration.

October 18, 2000

The agency's Domestic Violence program was expanded to include a community based component for inmates supervised on Transitional Supervision at four level two facilities: Gates Correctional Institution, Northeast Correctional Institution, Webster Correctional Institution and Willard-Cybulski Correctional Institution.

October 22, 2000

The Maloney Center for Training and Staff Development was presented with an "Award of Excellence" by the International Association of Correctional Training Personnel for its accredited training standards and curriculum.

December 31, 2000

Department employees raised a cumulative total of over $39,000 during the annual Special Olympics fundraising events