About Rhode Island Department of Corrections
Rhode Island's DOC's mission is to provide a range of custodial options, supervision, and rehabilitative services to help offenders reintegrate into society upon release from prison. The Department is committed to providing safe, secure, and humane environments for inmates. It operates several correctional facilities, including three maximum male facilities, a medium-security unit, and a minimum-security one. There are also female prisons which are two in total. They include a medium and a minimum-security unit. Overall, these Adult Correctional Institutions have a capacity of around 3800, with their location in Cranston.
The current Director of Rhode Island DOC is Patricia Coyne-Fague, who oversees the operations of the facilities. The office of the Governor makes the Director's appointment, who reports directly to the Governor.
The headquarters of the Rhode Island Department of Corrections is in Cranston.
Inmate Classification Process
Classification is the process of assigning convicts to institutions depending on their risk and necessity. The DOC takes into consideration the following elements during classification:
- Inmates' needs and available services, such as medical, mental health, vocational, educational, and employment services.
- Determining and assigning appropriate custody and security levels.
- Properly housing the inmates.
- Scheduling a review of custody assignments to reassess inmates' needs and risks.
The categorization procedure starts as soon as an offender becomes part of the DOC and continues until release. This action, in general, comprises practically all actions which impact an inmate's life while in detention. It is crucial to note that components of the classification process are under the parameters of particular Departmental rules and procedures and relevant Rhode Island legislation and court judgments.
Inmate Educational Services
Every facility within the Adult Correctional Institutions conducts Education Unit programming five days a week, year-round. This includes on weekends and evenings. Students receive instruction from highly experienced teachers. Additionally, they also get help from tutors and para-professionals. Each prison includes dedicated rooms and libraries, which are open to all convicts depending on the schedule. Moreover, there are also computer laboratories, which allow students to improve their computer skills while aiming to complete the program.
Students in the education program possess a diverse variety of qualities and capabilities. These services aim at starting up where the students left off in their academic careers. Normally, the average offender partaking in the Adult Basic Education (ABE) program has inferior reading skills. Additionally, the offender also has major gaps in his or her educational background. As such, this program aims to rectify this issue.
The General Education Diploma (GED) program focuses on students who were close to graduating from high school but maybe experiencing certain educational difficulties.
Further, there are also courses such as English Language Learners, the Inmate Literacy Program, GED testing, post-secondary education programs, Special Education, Pre-employment/Job Readiness, mentoring, and vocational training are also available. This is in addition to ABE/GED courses. Further, the Educational Services division is in charge of all recreational reading libraries and legal libraries.
Inmate Correctional Industries
The establishment of Rhode Island Correctional Industries (RICI) was in 1934 to give work skills to offenders. Today, RICI is a flourishing local company that employs roughly 130 prisoners who will utilize their job skills to lead productive lives after incarceration. The following are some of RICI's most popular services:
Furniture or Upholstery
Inmates assemble raw materials from manufacturers while working in the DOC's furniture and upholstery industry to make completely new furniture for consumers. The prisoners undertake tasks such as making furniture for the office, dorm room, conference room, and lounge area. Individuals in need can directly acquire upholstery from the Rhode Island Department of Corrections.
The Rhode Island Department of Corrections has been producing all of the state's license plates for many decades. This has resulted from a long-standing cooperative agreement with the Rhode Island Division of Motor Vehicles. Initially, this shop was at Maximum Security before relocating to its current location in 1991.
The initial step involves making the license plates from big metal rolls by passing them through a blanking press. Then, the inmates add rolls of sheets. These sheets have a design that appears like a long line of one of the numerous state license plates in the United States. The entire process involves heating and cooling the plates to create a permanent seal. Workers evaluate each plate for flaws at the end of the line before moving on to the next.
Approximately 20 offenders work in this shop, where they have the opportunity to develop important skills. These skills are comparable to those gained from working in a warehouse or a manufacturing facility. The convicts operate the machines, do product inspections, clean, inspect, and repair the machinery. They undertake these tasks while learning valuable real-world skills like collaboration, listening to and respecting a supervisor, responsibility, and the value of hard work in a productive environment.
The garment store offers a variety of clothing options. It is located inside the John J. Moran Medium Security institution and employs around 10-15 convicts. They engage in acts such as cutting, sewing, and preparation for the delivery of inmate uniforms and other items. Such items include towels, sheets, pillows, and laundry bags. Moreover, the Rhode Island Department of Corrections facilities is the primary consumers of these products. Other consumers and clients are the Rhode Island Training School and the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training. Inmates who work in this shop acquire sewing and tailoring skills and acquire work ethics necessary at any workplace.
All institutions operated by the Rhode Island Department of Corrections offer medical and clinical services to inmates. These individuals include those already convicted persons and those awaiting trial. Internists and generalists work under the clinical direction of the Medical Programs Director to deliver a complete medical program on-site at each institution.
The Health Care Services Unit includes medical and mental health services, as well as dental services and health education programs. These Units allow inmates to access sick calls and medical clinics in addition to infirmary services.
Moreover, there is a practitioner available for consultation at all times. Prisoners who may need acute medical/surgical intervention may access the services through community hospitals. The preferable ones are those with affiliation with the Lifespan and Care New England systems.
Inmates may also access specialty medical treatments through doctors from Miriam Hospital. Specialty services for cardiology and orthopedic care are delivered on-site by experts in their respective fields.
Furthermore, a collaboration with Brown University Medical School, RIDOC's Health Care Services provides clinical experience for medical students and residents in the areas of correctional medicine and infectious illnesses.
Mental Health Services
Mental health treatment is paramount for Inmates. As such, the Mental Health Services Division has the principal duty to offer these services. The Mental Health Division has a Behavioral Health Unit with 14 clinical social workers under the Rhode Island Department of Corrections (RIDOC). The Unit is led by a Clinical Director who supervises a clinical psychologist and the clinical social workers.
The Unit allocates clinical personnel to each institution on the basis of the inmate population at a facility. Further, staff offer services on-site between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. On-call services are also available from the Clinical Director and Supervising Clinical Psychologist 24 hours a day throughout the week.
The Food Service Unit
The Food Service Unit has the role of heading all offender food service operations in the DOC facilities. Furthermore, the Unit has ultimate accountability for these activities. This Unit has the following tasks:
- Menu planning.
- Food procurement.
- Food handling and food preparation.
- Ensuring offenders eat a balanced diet.
Each prison institution under the Department of Corrections has cooking facilities that provide convicts with three meals each day. It is the responsibility of Correctional Officer Stewards to supervise prisoner kitchen workers who are in charge of preparing and serving meals.
The Food Service Administration determines the food needs and components for the menu, while purchase management is through the Department's Central Distribution Center (CDC). The Food Service Unit serves roughly 9,000 meals each day to the whole DOC statewide.
Rhode Island DOC inmate Search
The DOC offender locator website is a service by the Department of Corrections to the general public. It provides people with specific inmate-related information. Moreover, utilizing the state prisoner lookup tool is free. The website's purpose is to create a link between the RIDOC and the general public by providing computerized access to specific information included in RIDOC files.
Additionally, some of the information available at the site is from third parties. As such, the DOC exclusively states that it does not guarantee the accurateness of the information.
The inmate search process entails accessing the above link. Then, the page gives inmate search options, including an inmate ID, name option including aliases, race, sex, and an offender's last known city.
Individuals can also subscribe to the VINE, which is a telephone service that is free and anonymous. The VINE gives updates on offenders in custody, including any change on offender custody status. Crime victims are more advised to register for these updates, which are sent through emails or texts.