“B.C. Corrections does not staff living units on a fixed-ratio basis and to say only one officer is supervising a living unit with 72 inmates does not at all reflect reality,” it said in an statement issued Tuesday after a union protest.
The union maintains that increased double-bunking of inmates and fewer guards watching them means “it’s just a matter of time before one of our members gets killed on the job.”
Corrections maintains that the scenario of any correctional centre being full to capacity requiring, two individuals in every cell, is extremely unlikely.”
The statement also commented on the 20 inmate-on-staff assaults recorded at OCC in 2018.
“An in-depth analysis showed that the vast majority of staff assaults occurred with just one or two inmates present or involved an individual who was locked in their cell at the time, typically a situation where that individual threw something at a staff member through the meal hatch. This demonstrates that ratios do not change inmate behaviour or prevent violence.
There were 126 recorded inmate-on-inmate assaults and 83 recorded incidents of inmate-on-inmate violence.
Ratios do not change inmate behaviour or prevent violence. New policy on classification and case management are helping to effect change for staff and the individuals in their care.”
The 378-cell OCC houses averaged 329 inmates last year.