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Resolution Program

About

The Department of Corrections’ Resolution Program is an unbiased, internal resolution and appeal system that promotes effective communication between employees, contract staff, volunteers and individuals under the department’s jurisdiction in an effort to resolve concerns at the lowest possible level. It provides an appropriate administrative avenue for voicing complaints without fear of retaliation.

The Resolution Program offers access to a process which allows for meaningful communication and resolution of concerns to produce a fair and just conclusion. It offers a collaborative approach to addressing the individuals concerns.

Resolution Request (CY 2019-2020)
Year Compromise Informal Resolution Individual’s Favor Total Resolved Total Requests
2019 1,846 4,898 1,602 8,346 34,694
2020 1,435 9,372 1,481 12,288 37,104

Process

Requests

A resolution request is where an individual can identify a concern about any one issue that is affecting them directly. All requests must meet the criteria as outlined in the Resolution Program Manual. All individuals are provided with information needed to file a resolution request during the orientation/intake process at our receiving facilities. Resolution request forms are readily available and the Resolution Program Manual (pdf) is available at each prison, work release location, and field office to guide them through the complaint and review process.

Before filing a resolution request, individuals are encouraged to attempt to informally resolve their issue at the lowest level possible by discussing their concern with staff in an attempt to clear up any misunderstandings by clarifying information. If an informal resolution cannot be reached and the individual feels further review of their concern is necessary, they may submit an appeal to the resolution staff’s response.

Family, friends and other outside parties cannot file a resolution request through this program. They are welcome to call, e-mail or write staff directly to express their concerns.

For information concerning accepted and not accepted concerns, please review the Resolution Program Manual (pdf).

Outcomes

The following are potential ways to resolve a request:

  • Compromise: A formal resolution request is resolved in the individual’s favor, but not by using the remedy the individual recommend or by implementing only a portion of the suggested remedy
  • Individual’s favor: A formal resolution request is resolved in the individual’s favor using the remedy the individual recommends.
  • Informal resolution: The listed remedy is met or the individual agrees to the resolution.

Here are the other ways requests may be resolved:

  • Specialist Withdrawal: When the individual refuses to sign the formal resolution request or when the individual fails to attend a scheduled interview to discuss the complaint, the Resolution Request was filed in error, and other administrative protocols listed in the Resolution Program Manual (pdf).
  • Individual’s Withdrawal: Upon the request of the individual the complaint/resolution request, and appeal is withdrawn.
  • State Favor: The resolution request is resolved in the state’s favor when the issue or condition remains unchanged.
  • Withdrawn Over the allowable limit: Individuals may only have five active resolution requests at any one time. These include active reviews, rewrites, appeals, and new concerns. Medical concerns can be accepted over this limit with approval by the resolution program manager. If an individual submits additional resolution requests or appeals past the allowable amount, the resolution specialist will not accept them. If an individual files multiple requests at the same time that will put them over the five active concerns, they will not be accepted, and all will be sent back to the individual. At that time, the individual may submit in writing their selection of which concern(s) they want to withdraw and which one(s) to process. Individuals can make five withdraws of formal reviews or resolution requests per calendar year to allow for new requests to be processed.

Request for a rewrite: When a complaint does not meet the minimum criteria for review per the Resolution Program Manual (pdf) due to missing, multiple issues on one resolution request form, and/or inadequate or incomplete information.

Timeframes

Specific timeframes are set at each level to ensure a prompt response to resolution requests. The entire resolution process from initiating Level I to completion of Level III can be completed within 90 working days. However, the process can take longer than 90 days in some cases due to rewrites, mail delays, or a complicated review. It is the responsibility of both the employee assigned to the review and individuals to ensure resolution requests, appeals, and responses occur within established timeframes.

For more information on the response timeframes to a resolution request, please review the timeframes section in the Resolution Program Manual (pdf).

Resources

Policies

Below are Department of Corrections (DOC) policies that apply to the Resolution Program.

Forms

Below are Department of Corrections (DOC) forms that apply to the Resolution Program.

Publications

Below are Department of Corrections (DOC) publications that apply to the Resolution Program.

Resource Links