View Full Version : Shawangunk Correctional Facility


Manzanita
10-06-2004, 07:43 PM
Shawangunk Correctional Facility
750 Prison Road
Wallkill, New York 12589-0750

(845) 895-2081 (Ulster County)

Inmate Mail:
P.O. Box 700, Zip 12589
Maximum Male Directions

Visitation Hours: M-F 8:30am-2pm Sat and Sun same hours but you can only go one weekend day, not both.

Visiting Rules: No hoodies, No layers. No zippers, nothing metal, No wire bras, no short skirts, nothing sheer, and no tank tops. Use discretion and good judgement, Sandals are ok.

Visiting Room: There is one big room with tables wrapped around like school tables yet all connected. You sit across from the inmate, you cannot cross visit, and you cannot get up and lean over the table or kiss too long. There is an honor room seperated from the main room where you can sit at picnic like tables and sit next to them, and be able to hug and be closer. If you get tickets, you cannot sit there, you have to earn the honor room visits.

Lodging: No Information yet

Prison Web Site: None I know of

Prison Picture: None yet

FRP available: Yes, and there are four seperate 2 bedroom apartment like houses lined up next to eachother, there is a living room with a radio and tv with DVD player and play station, a full working kitchen with all appliances and utensils, pots and pans. You cannot bring your own sheets unless you bring a note from your dr. You must be married or be family to have one and put in also regular visits. Three adults at a time may go, children can go too. You cannot bring your own cooked food but you can bring anything but no glass or anything with alcohol in it. You get one every three-to two months. If you need more information please see the thread on the Family Reunion Program.

Number of prisoners: not sure

General Information


Shawangunk
In the early 1980's, cell space to house maximum-security inmates was becoming a scarce commodity across New York state. Faced with that vexing dilemma, Department officials threw out the playbook and created a new design that would be used to build three maximum-security facilities unlike any others in the Empire State. Contrary to the older and massive design of maximum -security prisons constructed a century ago, these new facilities would give an all new meaning to the phrase "tacking it to the max:" they would combine state-of-the-art construction with a unique design that would enhance security operations while also offering extensive inmate programming and enhanced administrative services.


With an eye toward efficiencies for state taxpayers, a new "shared services" concept for the new correctional facilities was put forth by then-First Deputy Commissioner William Quick, who was the former Superintendent at the medium- security Wallkill prison in Ulster County.

"First Dep" Quick realized the huge savings the state would experience when correctional facilities shared services such as water and sewer service, trash removal, recycling and composting efforts, heating, laundry, commissary, transportation and other identical needs.

The state already owned the property needed for these three new facilities. The communities that would house these new prisons were already well aware of the numerous benefits these new correctional facilities would provide to the local economy.

With the mission and locations now determined, construction began in the vicinity of the existing Woodboume, Elmira and Wallkill correctional facilities. Construction on Shawangunk, nestled in the shadow of Wallkill, began in 1983. The prison officially opened in late 1985. The first inmates were medium-security classified so they could assist in the final cleanup and preparation of the new facility.

Over the ensuing several months, the transformation from medium- to maximum-security inmates took place, and Shawangunk was fully operational in 1986. About the same time, Sullivan, near Woodboume, opened; Southport, near Elmira, soon followed.

A wealth of programming

Shawangunk has the capacity to house 575 male inmates in cells. Eighty-nine percent of the population are convicted of violent crimes.

The facility offers a full range of academic education, vocational training, counseling services, substance abuse treatment, Aggression Replacement Training, mental health and volunteer services programs.

Prison officials have designated 67 cells for close supervision, 67 as reception and long-term keeplock, while 16 cells are wheelchair accessible. A 24-bed SHU includes space for inmates in disciplinary status, protective custody and segregation. The infirmary houses 12 inmates.

Shawangunk is one of 25 facilities throughout the state that offers a Volunteer Tutoring Program. It involves an Inmate Program Associate (IPA) whose paid assignment involves assisting program services staff in the provision of services to other inmates. The supervisor of Volunteer Tutoring selects inmates according to the standards described in the IPA policy and procedure manual for the IPA position. The supervisor recommends placement in program services positions according to interest, knowledge and skills, and arranges training for all inmates in the program.

The goal of the program is to assist professional employees in various program services areas. They work under teaching staff to assist in providing additional aid to the student inmate so that they can acquire the skills necessary to read at a ninth-grade level and to accomplish vocational tasks.

Shawangunk is also one of just eight maximum-security prisons to offer a sex offender program. Group counseling is the major component of this multi-faceted program but it also includes individual counseling and education. The education component consists of sex education, assertive skills and inter- personal skills. Emphasis is placed on developing awareness of predisposing factors and alternative skills/behaviors in order to avoid dysfunctional sexual situations.

Potential program participants must be over the age of 21, be willing to identify and address problems related to sexual behavior and willing to employ alternative thinking and behavior patterns.

The program generally lasts between six and 12 months, depending on an individual's needs. Its goal is to help adults incarcerated for sex offenses to address their problems, learn alternative skills/behaviors and prepare for re-entry into the community.

Shawangunk also operates a highly-successful Youth Assistance Program YAP), whereby inmates address at risk-youths from the community to give them the hard facts about life in prison and hopefully steer them away from a life of drugs and crime. Designated offenders speak to youths who are interested in this specific type of initiative or those who have been referred for this type of program by social services, family court, area school districts or other community-based entities and family members.

Shawangunk also offers occupational training in building maintenance, which can provide participants with the skills they need to find eventual employment as assistants to plumbers or electricians, cabinet makers and carpenters, as well as jobs in custodial maintenance, general business and printing trades.

A more-secure facility and system

Like many other prisons throughout the state, Shawangunk has seen a marked decrease in the number of inmate-on-staff and inmate-on inmate assaults, as well as other violent incidents, since Governor Pataki took office in 1995.

For instance, the total number of violent incidents at the facility has decreased by 67 percent since 1996, falling from 30 to just 10 in 2001. Additionally, the number of inmate-on-staff assaults has fallen from 20 in 1997 to just three in 2001. The number of inmate-on-inmate assaults also has fallen by 67 percent since 1996, from nine to just three in 200 I. No inmate escapes have occurred at the facility since January 1, 1995.

However, Commissioner Goord remains committed to a policy that even one assault on an employee is too many.

As a result, the Department continues to discipline all in mates for such assaults and forwards as many cases as possible to local district attorneys for prosecution as new crimes.

Shawangunk's workforce totaled 352 in 1995, compared to 362 in March 2002. Part of the increase was due to the opening of a new infirmary in 1995. There were 557 inmates housed in the facility last month.

Operating expenses rose from $15.6 million in Fiscal 1996 to $18.5 million in Fiscal 2001. The facility payroll portion of that spending rose from $13.6 million in Fiscal 1996 to $16 million in Fiscal 2001.

Shawangunk has had $12,460,770 in capital expenses since 1995 and will have an estimated $3,256,000 in Fisca12003 for a total of$15, 716,773. This has already financed or will in the future pay for general maintenance and assorted rehabilitation projects, including construction of a new primary care infirmary and replacement of the facility's main steam line.

Working with the community

Department staff are not the only people who interact with Shawangunk inmates on a daily basis in an effort to help them get their lives in order and succeed on the outside.

More than 100 registered community volunteers provide a variety of programs -including pre-release services, family services, educational tutoring, future employment assistance, religion, drama, art and a host of athletic events.

Outside volunteers also run a life skills speakers' program under which inmates are provided with a wealth of information on issues such as reestablishing credit upon re- lease, personal finances, men's health issues, anger management, sports medicine, nutrition, motor vehicle laws and job preparation.

Through the ongoing efforts of these dedicated volunteers, inmates are expected to accept and participate in a variety of programs and services designed to assist them in becoming law-abiding members of the community upon their release from prison. Contact with the community at large also offers inmates his monument last year to the opportunity to learn new and constructive ways of utilizing their time. It also provides them with an opportunity to gain a better perspective on their ultimate role in society.

In addition to the ongoing supervision of volunteers, Shawangunk's Volunteer Services Office is responsible for bringing several sports and show business celebrities into the facility to meet with the inmate population.

For an example, professional boxers such as Alex Stewart (heavyweight champion), Iran Barkley (former middleweight champion), Billy Costello (former junior welterweight champion) and referee Ron Lipton have all visited the facility.

Hollywood movie star and stage actor Richard Kiley has also visited with staff and inmates at Shawangunk, as has Broadway maestro Shepard Coleman, who directed such musicals as Hello Dolly! and Golden Boy.

Like all other facilities in the state, Shawangunk is accredited by the American Correctional Association (ACA).

It is subject to triennial reaccreditation to ensure compliance with ACA standards designed to ensure that the facility is being run in a safe and efficient manner on a daily basis. Auditors also look at a variety of disciplines, including security, health care, food service, safety and training issues, living environment and programs.

During their August 2000 visit, auditors were particularly impressed with what they witnessed. They had some especially high praise for the conditions of confinement at the maximum- security facility and related quality-of-life issues.

"With the quality of life here, and this is a maximum-security unit (with) long- term offenders, we were impressed and amazed in many regards at how stable a situation you have and how high the quality of life is, given the circumstances of incarceration in this facility," said Kelley Ward, a warden from Louisiana who chaired the ACA panel that audited Shawangunk, during an exit interview with facility officials.

"The atmosphere in this facility was almost shocking to me for a maximum- security facility and I think that says a lot about the people who work here and there is a lot of professionalism and their commitment to what they are doing," Warden

In its fina1 2000 report that led to Shawangunk's reaccreditation for another three years, ACA auditors also opined: "Library services are excellent. The librarian is well- qualified in her field and demonstrates a great deal of enthusiasm for her services. The reading materials are varied. High- interest reading materials are provided for the long-term population. Regular rounds are apparent in the special housing unit and in other areas where the keeplock program restricts access to the library. Inter-library loans are utilized. The legal library is well-stocked with current materials…"

Shawangunk is subject to another reaccreditation review next year. Despite its ongoing track record of compliance, facility officials aren't resting on their laurels: staff is working as hard on reaccreditation as they once worked on their first accreditation.

Program assignments include in-facility community service work assignments on behalf of local governments and non- profit groups in the area.

Maximum-security inmates are not permitted on supervised outside community crews like inmates at other prisons but still can work in the facility on projects like printing brochures, repairing and reupholstering furniture and similar ventures. If not for DOCS, many of those projects would not otherwise be completed.

Since 1995, Shawangunk crews have logged 4,925 work hours.

Each October staff and inmates participate in Make a Difference Day activities.

In 2001, they donated money to the survivors of the victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.

Staff also collected and made donations of clothing and bottled water to World Trade Center rescuers.

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