Del. Dept. of Corrections launching citizens’ academy, aim for transparency
DELAWARE – The Delaware Department Corrections is planning on giving a group of Delawareans an inside look at what goes on behind prison walls. “We wanted a way to build and strengthen our relationships and connection to the community which we serve. We wanted to provide a look at the inner workings of the DOC that’s not visible from what we call outside the fence line,” said Deputy Bureau Chief of Prisons Paul Shavack.
Shavack says about 20 people signed up for the five week program. It highlights training correctional officers go through, how an offender is classified, and rehabilitation programs for offenders. Citizens in the program will also get to go on facility visits to James T. Vaughn Correctional Center and the probation and parole center in Dover. “There’s a lot that goes on in there. There’s a lot that goes on with our offenders to reach rehabilitation. What we wanted to do was give the community a bird’s eye view of that, and that’s how we wanted to proceed with the citizen’s academy,” said Shavack.
Shavack says the department wanted to be as transparent as possible, and give people a look at what the day to day life of both correctional officers and offenders is like. “There’s different perspectives out there on what the Department of Corrections is. You see it from the media perspective, you see it from what you see in the movies. But we want to give that true perspective of what goes on in the inner workings of the Department of Corrections,” said Shavack.
Shavack says he thinks this would be a good opportunity for people who have family or loved ones that are incarcerated. He adds that if you didn’t get the opportunity to sign up, another way to keep up with what’s going on at the DOC is through their social media.