Saturday, March 28, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Union: California prison staff told to fake checks

California Prisons

In this Thursday, July 24, 2014 photo, an inmate sits by a window at the mental health unit at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation's Stockton Health Facility in Stockton, Calif. The California Association of Psychiatric Technicians union says that employees at the facility were instructed to routinely falsify suicide watch records, endangering inmates and violating standards imposed in response to federal court orders. The union claims inadequate staffing is prompting shortcuts that circumvent requirements meant to protect inmates. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

By
From page A1 | August 01, 2014 |

SACRAMENTO — California prison employees were pressured into falsifying suicide-watch records at the state’s troubled new Stockton medical facility, endangering inmates and violating standards imposed in response to federal court orders, according to the union representing psychiatric technicians.

The union told The Associated Press that employees were instructed by supervisors to routinely sign log sheets certifying they had followed rules stipulating they check on inmates in the mental health crisis unit every 12 to 15 minutes when they had not done so because they were too busy with other work. Two workers were disciplined when video surveillance showed that they lied.

There were two suicide attempts in the unit, one in May and one in July, though both inmates survived, Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation spokeswoman Dana Simas said in an email. She could not say if either attempt was during the time that the inmates were not being observed as often as required. She referred requests for comment to the federal court-appointed receiver who oversees prison medical care in California.

Joyce Hayhoe, a spokeswoman for the receiver, said officials from her office and the corrections department plan to meet Monday to discuss policies at the crisis unit. She said she can’t discuss personnel issues, “but obviously any falsification isn’t appropriate and won’t be tolerated.”

One worker won her job back earlier this month when the video recording backed up her story that she was busy performing other required tasks when she was supposed to be checking to ensure inmates were OK, said Steve Bassoff, attorney for the California Association of Psychiatric Technicians. The second employee is awaiting a hearing in September before the State Personnel Board.

“It illustrates the problem that we’re talking about,” Bassoff said of the video. “They had other duties they were performing, so they essentially couldn’t be two places at once.”

The union says inadequate staffing is prompting shortcuts that circumvent requirements meant to protect inmates.

The $1 billion Stockton facility opened a year ago and has nearly 3,000 beds. It mainly treats sick and mentally ill inmates. Medical admissions were halted in January amid what federal receiver J. Clark Kelso described as serious, systemic problems with care. Admissions were resumed last week.

The mental health crisis unit serves inmates deemed most at risk of harming themselves or others. One of the psychiatric techs who works there is responsible for passing out medications, while a second is responsible for checking on the welfare of inmates, among other duties.

Union representative Ann Lyles said she has been complaining about staffing since May.

A consultant hired by Kelso recently recommended the prison add an additional psychiatric technician on each shift at the crisis unit.

Attorneys from the nonprofit Berkeley-based Prison Law Office toured the Stockton facility in July, but they were not informed of the issue with the logs, director Don Specter said. Filing false documents for a government agency is a crime that merits further investigation, he said.

“These welfare checks were put in there because of the extremely high suicide rate we have in California,” Specter said. “It’s a serious issue. It could mean the difference between life and death.”

 

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Fraisure Smith hearing delayed twice Friday

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A1, 14 Comments | Gallery

 
Luncheon honors women for their work to help others

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

Sheepdogs, handlers flock to Rio Vista for trials

By Susan Winlow | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Solano Rotary clubs honor top firefighters from across county

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Eatery to host event to support child with cancer

By Glen Faison | From Page: A3

 
Project begins to brighten downtown Fairfield

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3, 21 Comments | Gallery

 
Fairfield police log: March 26, 2016

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9, 1 Comment

Suisun police log: March 26, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

 
Going home to mother

By Murray Bass | From Page: B10, 2 Comments

 
.

US / World

 
Jury says Silicon Valley firm did not discriminate

By The Associated Press | From Page: A3

 
Gov. Brown signs $1 billion water plan for dry California

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4 | Gallery

 
Public defender: San Francisco jail inmates forced to fight

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
NY mayor: Someone may have ‘inappropriately’ tapped gas line

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Feds: Baltimore jail illegally keeping juveniles in solitary

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Autopsies determine children found in freezer were slain

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Fetus debate looms following charges in womb-cutting case

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
 
‘Sopranos’ star’s apartment destroyed by blast

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Pilot who scared passengers sues airline

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

‘Mad Men’ costumes, props head to Smithsonian

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
US economy showing signs of durability

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7, 1 Comment

Mexico City businesses cite losses during Bond filming

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Nelson set to return to role as Coach

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
German airline could face ‘unlimited’ damages for Alps crash

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Co-pilot appeared healthy, but may have hidden illness

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
About 4,000 fishermen stranded on Indonesian islands

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

Warships move in key strait as airstrikes widen in Yemen

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11 | Gallery

 
Iran says nuke talks focused despite Yemen crisis

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

At least 9 dead as militants attack hotel in Somali capital

By The Associated Press | From Page: A12

 
Amanda Knox murder conviction overturned by Italy high court

By The Associated Press | From Page: A12

.

Living

Books as decor: Versatile but meaningful design elements

By The Associated Press | From Page: HSR1Comments are off for this post | Gallery

 
Today in History: March 28, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

Community Calendar: March 28, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
Horoscopes: March 28, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B6

My elderly mother is so stingy I’m finding excuses not to visit her

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: B6

 
The newest fitness trend: Mixing it up

By The Associated Press | From Page: B10

.

Entertainment

‘Stomp’ stopped by NYC blast

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Mannequin museum show hits New York

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
‘Teen Mom’ star charged in picture posting case

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

People: Zane Malik

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Larry David Broadway role handed to Jason Alexander

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

.

Sports

Curry, Thompson lead Warriors in rout over Grizzlies

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Evans helps desperate Pelicans end skid vs. Kings, 102-88

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Ranuado goes 6 for Rangers’ but A’s rally for 7-6 win

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Notre Dame beats Stanford women 81-60, advances to Elite Eight

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
A-Rod’s cousin pleads guilty in Florida steroids case

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Durant to have another surgery, miss rest of season

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Chicago rooftop owner charged with trying to defraud Cubs

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Gift returns: Sterling wife wants house, $1 million

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Shaq acknowledges regret about decision to leave Magic

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
NASCAR topic: Cheating with tire pressure, or just hot air?

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Hot Rod Hundley, former NBA player and Jazz announcer, dies

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Area resident Jimmy Walker takes lead in Texas Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Logano wins Martinsville pole; Elliott to start 27th

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
This date in sports history for March 28, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

.

Home Seller 3/28/2015

Books as decor: Versatile but meaningful design elements

By The Associated Press | From Page: HSR1Comments are off for this post | Gallery

Real estate transactions for March 28, 2015

By Daily Republic | From Page: HSR2