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News Archive

2023

February

2/3/2023 | Correctional Industries Seeking Advisory Committee Members
TUMWATER – Correctional Industries, the Washington Department of Corrections’ division focused on vocational education and job readiness of the incarcerated population, is seeking three representatives on its advisory committee.

January

1/25/2023 | Reintegration Reimagined: DOC Launches New Community Corrections Model
The Department of Corrections is proud to launch a new supervisory model for our Community Corrections Division called iCoach.
1/18/2023 | Pro-Equity Anti-Racism (PEAR) Initiative WADOC
Since Secretary Cheryl Strange joined the Department of Corrections in 2021, one of her top priorities has been developing a human-centered organization that is fair, just, equitable, inclusive and embraces diversity.
1/11/2023 | Amend: Corrections Officers from Oslo, Norway visit Washington State
The Amend Project has once again returned to Washington State as corrections officers from Oslo, Norway came to visit our prisons in the Pacific Northwest.
1/4/2023 | Amend: Improving Washington’s Correctional System for Staff & Incarcerated
Washington State corrections staff are already seeing positive benefits in their lives at work and at home since joining Amend.
1/3/2023 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: March 2023 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) March 2023 hearing list.

2022

December

12/28/2022 | Walla Walla Veteran’s Home Christmas
WALLA WALLA – On Thursday, December 22nd veterans housed at the Walla Walla Veteran’s Home (WDVA) gathered around tables to receive personalized Christmas gifts purchased by staff at the Washington State Penitentiary (WSP).
12/22/2022 | Correctional Industries Seeking Advisory Committee Members
TUMWATER – Correctional Industries, the Washington Department of Corrections’ division focused on vocational education and job readiness of the incarcerated population, is seeking three representatives on its advisory committee.
12/21/2022 | Incarcerated Individuals Give the Governor’s Mansion a Holiday Facelift
Govenor Jay Inslee and First Spouse Trudie Inslee were excited to see the holiday facelift at the Governor’s Mansion in Olympia, WA. Incarcerated women visited to decorate for the annual holiday tour season.
12/14/2022 | Safety Culture Initiative Seeks to Empower Staff to Improve Agency
A new initiative seeks to make the Department of Corrections a safer and more transparent workplace that empowers staff and increases job satisfaction.
12/7/2022 | The Washington State 2022 Governor’s Equity Summit
On November 30, DOC staff had the privilege of attending Governor Inslee’s 2022 Equity Summit, hosted by the Office of Equity.
12/5/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: February 2023 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) February 2023 meeting list.

November

11/30/2022 | Washington State Penitentiary Wins Charitable Award for Library
Prison Fellowship is an organization that takes a restorative approach to those affected by crime and incarceration.
11/23/2022 | Pow Wows and Traditional Ceremonies Make Their Return
Native American Heritage Day, November 25th, pays tribute to indigenous people and their immense contributions to the United States.
11/9/2022 | National Institute of Corrections Presents WA Corrections’ Belinda Stewart with Director’s Award
Washington State Department of Corrections’ (DOC) Correctional Program Administrator (CPA), Belinda Stewart, is the 2022 recipient of the National Institute of Corrections’ (NIC) Director Award.
11/2/2022 | News Spotlight: Washington State Department of Corrections Office of Corrections Ombuds Response
The Department of Corrections (DOC) recognizes the important role the Office of Corrections Ombuds (OCO) plays addressing concerns of those in our care and custody, their families and the public in general.
11/2/2022 | Yen Huynh Named Equity Diversity Inclusion & Respect Director
Department of Corrections Secretary Cheryl Strange has appointed Yen Huynh as director of the agency’ Office of Equity Diversity Inclusion & Respect (EDIR).
11/1/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: January 2023 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) January 2023 meeting list.

October

10/31/2022 | Correctional Industries Seeking Advisory Committee Members
TUMWATER – Correctional Industries, the Washington Department of Corrections’ division focused on vocational education and job readiness of the incarcerated population, is seeking three representatives on its advisory committee.
10/25/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: Access to Prison Creates a Path Home for Indigenous Inmates
MARYSVILLE – At a signing ceremony, the Tulalip Tribes and DOC officially entered into a historic agreement, the first of its kind, that will allow individuals convicted in tribal court to serve their sentences in DOC jurisdiction.
10/19/2022 | A Day in the Life of a CCO Is Anything but Typical
It’s an overcast day in southern King County, but typical weather doesn’t mean Rodger Rivera’s day will be the same as any other.
10/12/2022 | Telepresence Services Improve Patient Care and Legal Access at the Department of Corrections
With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) launched into meeting the needs of its incarcerated population through telepresence services.
10/5/2022 | Statewide Tour Gives Staff Opportunity to Provide Feedback to Reentry Leadership
The Reentry Division Road Show is in the midst of a six-week tour of Washington State Department of Corrections facilities that provide staff the opportunity to discuss their work with division leadership.

September

9/28/2022 | Norway Trip Gives DOC Team Insight Into Amend Program
The lives of Norway Prison staff were improved by providing humane treatment to the perpetrator of one of the most heinous crimes in the history of Norway.
9/21/2022 | Washington State Department of Corrections to Begin Replacing Gas-Powered Vehicles with Electric
On November 3, 2021, Governor Jay Inslee signed Executive order 21-04 to help combat climate change, Washington State agencies will be required to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by replacing local and state fleets with electric or biofuel powered vehicles.
9/14/2022 | DOC Director of Person-Centered Services Christopher Poulos Appointed to National Advisory Board
The Council of State Governments (CSG) Justice Center has announced an appointment for Christopher Poulos to serve on its national advisory board.
9/8/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: December 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) December 2022 meeting list.
9/7/2022 | Farewell to Two Brigadoon Trained Service Dogs
On August 11, 2022 we sent a farewell to two Brigadoon trained service dogs Elliot and Evan.

August

8/31/2022 | Incarcerated Women Raise Endangered Butterflies
Incarcerated butterfly technicians have received a new batch of the federally endangered Taylor’s Checkerspot butterflies at Mission Creek Corrections Center for Women (MCCCW).
8/30/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: November 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) November 2022 meeting list.
8/24/2022 | Reentry Panel Sheds Light on Ways to Help Formerly Incarcerated Find Work
All they need is a chance. That was the major takeaway from a Greater Kirkland Chamber of Commerce Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Symposium on July 14.
8/17/2022 | Congresswoman Gets First Hand Look at DOC’s Parent Sentencing Alternative Program
U.S. Rep. Kim Schrier has made it her mission to make life better for children.
8/15/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: Department of Corrections Receives Gender Informed Practices Assessment
TUMWATER – The Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) is pleased to announce they are in receipt of the long-awaited Gender Informed Practices Assessment (GIPA) conducted by national experts.
8/11/2022 | News Spotlight: Mail Services Workgroup Summary
Social connections maintained during incarceration are invaluable. Much of this support is maintained through the departments’ mail services operations. The Department of Corrections (DOC) values this resource and the ability to provide this service to the incarcerated population and seeks to improve the service.
8/10/2022 | Cedar Creek Turtle Program: Rehabilitated Endangered Turtles Get Released
Around a dozen endangered Western Pond Turtles are happy to be back home in the wild after months of care by incarcerated turtle technicians at Cedar Creek Corrections Center.
8/9/2022 | News Spotlight: Washington State Department of Corrections Retaliation Response
The Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) appreciates the opportunity to address such an important topic, such as retaliation, which is an all-too-common occurrence in correctional settings.
8/5/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: Department of Corrections Names Chris Wright as Communications Director
TUMWATER – Secretary Cheryl Strange has named Chris Wright as Communications Director for the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC), effective August 17, 2022.
8/3/2022 | Research Team Tours Washington Prisons to Learn Best Practices
The success of the Washington State Department of Corrections’ Correctional Industries and corrections education has drawn the attention of researchers and the Illinois Department of Corrections.
8/1/2022 | INTERESTED PARTIES MEMO: Assistant Secretary of Men's Prison Division Announcement (pdf)
8/1/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: DOC Secretary Announces the Retirement of Prisons Leader Mike Obenland & Appointment of Donald Holbrook to Top Prisons Job
TUMWATER – The Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) Secretary Cheryl Strange announced today the retirement of Mike Obenland as the Assistant Secretary of the Men’s Prisons Division, effective September 1, 2022.

July

07/21/2022 | Excessive Heat Warning 07/21/22, Updated 07/28/2022 (pdf)
The Department of Corrections is committed to operating safe and humane facilities, especially during times of excessive heat.
7/20/2022 | DOC Partner Helps Formerly Incarcerated People Find Work
Something special is happening in a quiet building in the industrial Georgetown neighborhood of Seattle.
7/13/2022 | Georgie Brown Fuels Her Passion by Teaching Family Skills
Georgie Brown walks the room in a casual manner, speaking in a way that demands respect but also shows compassion. She moves back and forth easily, engaging with each of the six men as she offers instruction and advice as they let their guard down and discuss their childhoods and how they plan to be better parents.
7/6/2022 | National Institute of Corrections Training Brings New Skills to Members of Women’s Division
It is no secret that women and men have different needs, but policies tend to classify female prisoners in the same ways as men. The creation of the Women’s Prisons Division in 2021 is meant to better address the needs of staff and the people under the Department of Corrections (DOC) jurisdiction.
7/5/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: October 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) October 2022 meeting list.
7/1/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: September 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) September 2022 meeting list.

June

6/29/2022 | WCC Project Will Save Millions of Gallons of Water Annually & Policies
A Washington Corrections Center (WCC) project decades in the making will do more than save millions of gallons of water each year. It will restore wildlife in Shelton.
6/22/2022 | During Pride Month Corrections Highlights LGBTQ+ Partnerships & Policies
Each year, the nation recognizes June as Pride Month in remembrance of the historic Stonewall Uprising that occurred in Manhattan on June 28, 1969.
6/15/2022 | Washington State Penitentiary Indigenous Incarcerated Individuals Rebuild Inípi
On Monday, June 6th the Washington State Penitentiary (WSP) was visited by an Elder from the Kalispel tribe for the ceremonial burn and rebuild of its West Complex Inípi, otherwise known as the sweat lodge. For nearly 30 years.
6/7/2022 | News Spotlight: Clarifying Inaccurate Information About Jeremy Bennett Release
Recently, you may have seen media coverage stating that the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) accidentally released an incarcerated individual, Jeremy Bennett.
6/1/2022 | Incarcerated Give Back by Fighting Fires
The Wildland Fire Leadership Council visited Spokane Valley during their 2022 Field Tour. The council was able to visit with the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to see the Washington Department Natural Resource Camps Program.

May

5/25/2022 | Nurses Month Concludes - Correctional Nurses Share their Story
Approximately 400 nurses provide the majority of medical care needed for the individuals incarcerated in Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) facilities.
5/18/2022 | DOC’s Prison Medicine Garden Staff Provide Guidance to DCYF to Develop Program at Correctional Youth Facility
In recent past, the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) announced a new program to grow indigenous medicines within prison facilities.
5/11/2022 | Incarcerated Say ‘Thank You’ to Correctional Nurses
Approximately 400 nurses provide the majority of medical care needed for the individuals incarcerated in Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) facilities.
5/9/2022 | News Spotlight: Washington State Department of Corrections Expands Emergency Operations to Address Nationwide Tuberculosis Medication Shortage
The Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) is utilizing its existing emergency operations center to enhance its response to the nationwide shortage of tuberculosis medication.
5/5/2022 | Corrections Officers Get Advanced Training at Sergeant Academy
Department of Corrections sergeants from all over Washington state came to Cedar Creek Corrections Center (CCCC) April 11, 2022, for a weeklong Sergeant Academy to develop their skills as corrections sergeants, mentors, coaches and leaders.
5/4/2022 | INTERESTED PARTIES MEMO: DOC 440.000 Personal Property Program – Musical Instruments (pdf)
This memorandum is to provide additional information regarding options available for purchasing musical instruments and accessories during incarceration.
5/4/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: August 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) August 2022 meeting list.
5/3/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: Washington State Department of Corrections Announces Securus Technologies as Vendor for Incarcerated Individual Technology Services
TUMWATER – Free tablets, reduced call rates of up to 44%, and a limited number of free calls for incarcerated individuals are among the benefits of a new contract between the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) and corrections technology provider, Securus Technologies.
5/2/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: July 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) July 2022 meeting list.

April

4/27/2022 | Second Chance Month – Reentry Matters
In April, the U.S. Department of Justice along with numerous partners is supporting Second Chance Month to help individuals, communities, and agencies across the country recognize the importance of reentry and their role in supporting safe and successful reentry.
4/20/2022 | Governor Jay Inslee Signs Senate Bill 5694
Governor Jay Inslee has signed several key tribal-related bills into law.
4/13/2022 | Department of Corrections Reopens Programs for Incarcerated Individuals Across the State
With the decline of COVID-19 numbers across Washington State, incarcerated individuals are slowly gaining back some normalcy with the reintroduction of programs and work at their facilities.

March

3/30/2022 | Amend: Changing Correctional Culture
DOC and Amend launched a partnership in October 2020 to continue achieving further pro-social improvements in the Washington correctional system.
3/24/2022 | Formerly Incarcerated on TRAC to Change Their Lives
When Amber Fisher went to prison in 2018, she had no idea she would leave the Department of Corrections better mentally, physically, and financially than when she went in.
3/14/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: June 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) June 2022 meeting list.
3/14/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: May 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) May 2022 meeting list.
3/14/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: Name of Deceased Incarcerated Individual at Washington State Penitentiary Released
WALLA WALLA – Dayva Cross, who had been sentenced to death in King County Washington, was pronounced deceased on March 13, 2022, at approximately 1:15 p.m.
3/13/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: Death of Incarcerated Individual at Washington State Penitentiary Under Investigation
WALLA WALLA – Detectives with the Walla Walla Police Department (WWPD) are investigating the death of an incarcerated individual found deceased at approximately 1:05 p.m. PST at the Washington State Penitentiary (WSP) in Walla Walla.
3/7/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: Secretary Strange Appoints Dr. MaryAnn Curl DOC Chief Medical Officer
TUMWATER – Secretary Cheryl Strange has appointed MaryAnn Curl, MD MS to the role of Chief Medical Officer for the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC).

February

2/23/2022 | Automotive Pre-Apprenticeship at Coyote Ridge Corrections Center Paves New Pathways
A new Automotive Pre-Apprenticeship program at Coyote Ridge Corrections Center (CRCC) will now give incarcerated individuals the opportunity to learn automotive skills and earn professional credentials.
2/22/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: Corrections Resumes Visitation for Three Facilities
TUMWATER – Due to decreasing case counts of COVID-19, the Washington State Department of Corrections will resume visitation at those prison and work release facilities which are no longer on “facility wide outbreak status.”
2/14/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: Escapee From Minimum Security Coyote Ridge Corrections Center Back In Custody
CONNELL – An escapee from minimum security at the Coyote Ridge Corrections Center (CRCC) facility near Connell in eastern Washington is back in custody.
2/14/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: Department of Corrections Searching for Minimum Security Incarcerated Individual Escaped From Coyote Ridge Corrections Center
CONNELL – A minimum security incarcerated individual has escaped from the Coyote Ridge Corrections Center (CRCC) minimum security unit near Connell in eastern Washington.
2/11/2022 | PRESS RELEASE: Medication Error Reported in Vaccine Clinic at Clallam Bay
TUMWATER – On Thursday, February 10, 2022, at the Clallam Bay Corrections Center, Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) Health Services staff identified that during an on-site vaccine clinic, a medication, Regen Cov, used to treat COVID-19 patients, had been administered to 23 incarcerated individuals and one staff member instead of a COVID-19 vaccine dose.
2/2/2022 | 2022 Black History Month Theme: Black Health and Wellness
MCarter G. Woodson, known as the “father of the Black History” created the celebration of Black accomplishment in 1926.

January

1/28/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: Monroe Correctional Complex – Twin Rivers Unit Docket Cancellation (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board is cancelling the Monroe Correctional Complex – Twin Rivers Unit Docket scheduled for February 1 and 2, 2022.
1/21/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: Airway Heights Docket Cancellation (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board is cancelling the Airway Heights Corrections Center Docket scheduled for January 25, 26 and 27, 2022.
1/4/2022 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: April 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) April 2022 meeting list.

2021

December

12/23/2021 | INTERESTED PARTIES MEMO: Governor’s FY22 Supplemental Budget Highlights for DOC (pdf)
The Department of Corrections (DOC) takes the health and safety of the incarcerated individuals in the state’s custody very seriously.
12/22/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: March 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) March 2022 meeting list.
12/22/2021 | Jayme Biendl 5K Memorial Run/Walk Registration Now Open
Monroe Correctional Complex, the City of Monroe, the Behind the Badge Foundation and the Monroe Police Department are partnering to host the annual 5K memorial run/walk event on Sunday, January 23, 2022.
12/01/2021 | Corrections Presents at the Centennial Accord for the First Time Since 2009
Throughout Washington State, correctional facilities, offices, and operations of the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) exist on the ancestral lands and customary territories of Indigenous Peoples, Tribes, and Nations.

November

11/18/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Escapee From Cedar Creek Corrections Center Arrested in Bellingham Area
ROCHESTER – A minimum custody incarcerated individual who escaped from the Cedar Creek Corrections Center (CCCC) near Rochester in southwest Washington over the weekend has been apprehended this morning in Whatcom County.
11/18/2021 | Helping Improve Vision Around the World One Pair of Glasses at a Time
Correctional Industries (CI) is teaming up with Lions Clubs International to assist the Northwest Lions Eyeglass Recycling Center (NWLERC) in Olympia, Washington.
11/13/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Department of Corrections Searching for Incarcerated Individual Escaped From Cedar Creek Corrections Center
ROCHESTER – An incarcerated individual has escaped from the Cedar Creek Corrections Center (CCCC) near Rochester in southwest Washington.
11/10/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: February 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) February 2022 meeting list. This press release was amended on January 25, 2022 (pdf).
11/10/2021 | Employing and Supporting Veterans at Corrections
Currently, approximately 15% of the Washington State Department of Corrections roughly 8,000 staff members have identified themselves as veterans.
11/01/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Correctional Industries Seeking Advisory Committee Members
TUMWATER – Correctional Industries, the Washington Department of Corrections’ division focused on vocational education and job readiness of the incarcerated population, is seeking three representatives on its advisory committee.
11/01/2021 | Jill Getty Appointed Executive Director of the Indeterminate Sentence Review Board
Longtime Hearings Investigator Jill Getty has been appointed Executive Director of the Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB).

October

10/20/2021 | Science Fun at Larch Corrections Center
Schools may have been on summer break but that didn’t stop incarcerated fathers at Larch Corrections Center in Yacolt, Washington from hosting their annual science fair.
10/15/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Secretary Strange Appoints Christopher Poulos to Bring Perspective of Incarcerated Persons to DOC Practices
TUMWATER – Secretary Cheryl Strange has established a new position to mark the beginning of the department’s commitment to bringing the voice of incarcerated individuals into the department’s practices.
10/14/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: January 2022 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) January 2022 meeting list.

September

09/30/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Washington State Department of Corrections Ends Disciplinary Segregation
TUMWATER – For several years, the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) has been reviewing the disciplinary process for incarcerated individuals to identify areas of improvement.
09/29/2021 | Staff Psychologists are a Lifeline at a Difficult Time
It’s a widely-known fact that correctional officers face risks for serious injury or illness when they report to work each day.
09/22/2021 | Lending a Helping Paw: Service Dogs Common in Washington’s Prisons
September is National Service Dog Month, a time dedicated to raising awareness and showing appreciation for the extraordinary work service animals perform every day.
09/21/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: State Senator Jeannie Darneille (D-Tacoma) Named Assistant Secretary of Newly Created Women’s Prison Division
TUMWATER – Department of Corrections (DOC) Secretary Cheryl Strange has named state senator Jeannie Darneille (D-Tacoma) as Assistant Secretary of DOC’s Women’s Prison Division.
09/15/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: December 2021 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) December 2021 meeting list.
09/15/2021 | Community Corrections Officers Aid Lincoln County Sheriff's Office in Seizing Firearms
WILBUR – Five Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) Officers played a major role in helping Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrest a sex offender and recover 13 guns, several loaded magazines and over 7,450 of rounds of ammunition.
09/08/2021 | Going From ‘I Can’t’ to ‘I Can’: Larch Peer Mentoring Program is First Certified Prison Tutoring Program in the Nation
YACOLT – Steven Eichentopf shared his experience tutoring a student who was failing algebra.

August

08/26/2021 | INTERESTED PARTIES MEMO: Update – Phase Two Unit Closures (pdf)
Last week we hosted listening sessions regarding the Phase 2 unit closures that would be in addition to the Monroe Correctional Complex units closures announced on August 12, 2021.
08/25/2021 | Change of Seasons: Rebuilding the Sweat Lodge at Clallam Bay
CLALLAM BAY – Sweat lodges are an important ceremony for indigenous people, where participants give thanks, heal, seek wisdom, connect with their spirit guides, and purify mind, body and spirit.
08/24/2021 | INTERESTED PARTIES MEMO: Assistant Secretary of Prisons Announcement (pdf)
I am excited to announce the appointment of Mike Obenland to the Assistant Secretary of Prisons for the Washington State Department of Corrections effective September 1, 2021.
08/24/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: DOC Secretary Strange announces the appointment of experienced prisons leader Mike Obenland to Top Prisons job
TUMWATER – The Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) Secretary Cheryl Strange announced today the appointment of Mike Obenland to the Assistant Secretary of Prisons effective September 1, 2021.
08/29/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: November 2021 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) November 2021 meeting list.
08/23/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Stafford Creek Correctional Officer Dies From COVID-19
TUMWATER – The Washington State Department of Corrections was notified that Correctional Officer Darryl Goodrich of the Stafford Creek Corrections Center passed away on August 20, 2021 from complications of COVID-19.
08/18/2021 | Education is Her Passion: Daughter of Iraqi Refugees Helps Incarcerated Students Chart Reentry Paths
YACOLT – Hanan Al-Zubaidy (pronounced HAH-non Al-SOO- Bay- Dee) never met her maternal grandfather, but says his actions influenced her to make education a central part of her career.
08/12/2021 | INTERESTED PARTIES MEMO: Update - Monroe Correctional Complex Unit Closure (pdf)
Last week we hosted listening sessions, meetings, and discussions with our prison staff, those in our care and custody, families, program pminers and elected leaders.
08/11/2021 | INTERESTED PARTIES MEMO: COVID-19 Vaccine Requirement (pdf)
On August 10, 2021, Governor Inslee issued Proclamation 21-14 requiring most state employees to become vaccinated for COVID-19.
08/10/2021 | Excessive Heat Warning 08/10/21 (pdf)
The Department of Corrections is committed to operating safe and humane facilities, especially during the current excessive heat wave.
08/04/2021 | Remembering Officer Gabe Forrest
The Washington Department of Corrections, with the help of the Behind the Badge Foundation, organized a memorial service on Wednesday, July 7, 2021 at Olympic Stadium in Hoquiam, Wash. to celebrate the life of Officer Gabe Forrest.

July

07/29/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: October 2021 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) October 2021 meeting list.
07/29/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: September 2021 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) September 2021 meeting list.
07/29/2021 | INTERESTED PARTIES MEMO: Creating the DOC Women's Prison Division (pdf)
As we have long known, research and experience show us that the needs of incarcerated women are different than those of men.
07/29/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Secretary Strange Creates Women’s Prison Division
TUMWATER – Recognizing the need to update and align correctional operations and practices to be more informed by the differences between men and women, the Department of Corrections (DOC) will formally create a Women’s Prison Division within the agency.
07/28/2021 | Planting Seeds for Growth: Former UN Agricultural Expert Teaches Incarcerated Individuals Gardening, Life Skills
SHELTON – Benri Deanon credits his parents for igniting his passion for agriculture.
07/20/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: DOC resumes contact visitation and Extended Family Visiting
TUMWATER – The Washington State Department of Corrections’ (DOC) Safe Start Plan will go into effect August 15, 2021.
07/20/2021 | News Spotlight: Prison Bed Consolidation and Unit Closures
In May 2021, the Department of Corrections (DOC) shared a draft proposal for the closure of units within prison facilities.
07/14/2021 | Community Corrections – Helping support safe and successful community transitions
At Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC), the overall mission is to improve public safety by positively changing lives. The focus of the entire department is on ensuring better neighbors return to society.
07/07/2021 | Bridging a Technology Gap: $250,000 Grant Provides Laptops to Incarcerated Students at Washington Corrections Center for Women
GIG HARBOR – The COVID-19 pandemic has made distance learning the main method of getting an education for students across the country.

June

06/30/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Memorial Service Details Announced for Stafford Creek Correctional Officer Gabriel Forrest
TUMWATER – The Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) is saddened by the loss of Correctional Officer Gabe Forrest, who passed away on Thursday, June 17, 2021 from complications of COVID-19.
06/30/2021 | Reentry to the Workforce
In October 2020, Hyuk Ro was on the bus out of a correctional facility to the Bishop Lewis work release facility.
06/29/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Department of Corrections Contracts With National Corrections Health Care Expert Dr. Homer Venters
TUMWATER – Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) Secretary Cheryl Strange has announced a contract to support DOC Health Services with a national expert on prison medical care.
06/28/2021 | Excessive Heat Warning 06/28/21 (pdf)
The Department of Corrections is committed to operating safe and humane facilities, especially during the current excessive heat wave.
06/23/2021 | The Origins of Juneteenth
In 1852, Fredrick Douglas addressed audience about what the fourth of July meant to the enslaved people of America.
06/18/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Stafford Creek Correctional Officer Dies from COVID-19
TUMWATER – The Washington State Department of Corrections was notified that Correctional Officer Gabriel Forrest, 42 years of age, passed away on Thursday, June 17, 2021 from complications of COVID-19.
06/16/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Sean Murphy Appointed Deputy Secretary of Correctional Operations for Department of Corrections
TUMWATER – Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) Secretary Cheryl Strange has appointed former corrections leader Sean Murphy as Deputy Secretary of Correctional Operations for the department.
06/16/2021 | Corrections Recognizes LGBTQ Pride Month
TUMWATER – Corrections joins the nation in recognizing June as LGBTQ Pride Month, and supporting LGBTQ+ employees and allies.
06/09/2021 | Where Angels Gather: Incarcerated Individuals Across the State Create Benches for Shelton Memorial Park
SHELTON – A child’s death is one of the most painful things a parent can experience.
06/07/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: August 2021 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) August 2021 meeting list.
06/02/2021 | Bee-ing Happy and Productive in Prison
SHELTON – Washington Corrections Center (WCC) has four new beehives.

May

05/26/2021 | Investment in Priority Hire Program to Help Formerly Incarcerated Individuals, People of Color Find Construction Jobs in Seattle
SEATTLE – When Victoria Garza entered prison in August 2018 for the second time, she never thought she would one day use the skills she learned in order to reinforce the metal structure components of the Washington State Convention Center’s expansion.
05/19/2021 | The Return of In-Person Visitation
When the COVID-19 outbreak hit in March 2020, visitation was closed to loved ones of incarcerated individuals.
05/19/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Pat Glebe Appointed Interim Assistant Secretary for Prisons
TUMWATER – Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) Secretary Cheryl Strange has appointed retired prisons leader Pat Glebe as interim Assistant Secretary of DOC’s Prisons Division.
05/12/2021 | Celebrating Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month
May is Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month.
05/09/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: July 2021 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) July 2021 meeting list.
05/05/2021 | Providing Care and Compassion to Patients Behind Bars: An Interview with a Correctional Nurse
May is International Nurses Month.
05/03/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Corrections Resumes In-Person Visitation
TUMWATER – The Washington State Department of Corrections is pleased to announce that Safe Start Corrections Visitation is moving forward, with first visit sessions occurring on May 9, 2021.

April

04/29/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Inslee Names Cheryl Strange new Department of Corrections Secretary
Gov. Jay Inslee today named Cheryl Strange secretary of Washington’s Department of Corrections (DOC).
04/28/2021 | Math & Science Fair at Cedar Creek
In April 2021, at the annual Math and Science Fair at Cedar Creek Corrections Center in Littlerock, Wash., approximately 20 socially distanced fathers used creativity and ingenuity during an outdoor event, making projects for their children.
04/21/2021 | Successful partnership brings healthier food options to incarcerated individuals
Starting in 2017, the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) and the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) partnered together to bring healthier food and beverage options for incarcerated individuals, a population disproportionately affected by chronic diseases.
04/14/2021 | WCCW Braille Transcribers Chosen to Present at National Conference
GIG HARBOR – Two incarcerated women inside the Washington Corrections Center for Women’s (WCCW) Braille transcription program have been selected to give presentations at a national Braille conference on April 16, 2021.
04/07/2021 | Multi-Agency Event Seeks to Support Victims, Build Trust, Engage Communities during Crime Victims’ Rights Week
TUMWATER – Ken Paulson never imagined he would become an advocate for crime victims.
04/06/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: June 2021 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) June 2021 meeting list.

March

03/31/2021 | The Importance of Conferences
While incarcerated at the Mission Creek Corrections Center in 2019, Nichole Alexander used the Parent-Teacher Teleconference resources, provided by the Washington State Department of Corrections.
03/29/2021 | News Spotlight: State of Washington v. Blake
A recent state Supreme Court ruling voids Washington’s simple possession of a controlled substance statute. Learn more in this news spotlight.
03/24/2021 | One year later – Corrections’ response to COVID-19
As the nation reached one year since the beginning of COVID-19 restrictions, the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) looks back on its response to COVID-19, first in support of other state agencies, then providing much needed produce to the state’s food banks, assisting with the low supply of hand sanitizer across the state all while following health and safety protocols established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
03/17/2021 | Muckleshoot Tribe generously donates COVID-19 vaccine doses to Department of Corrections
The Washington State Department of Corrections continues to take steps to ensure incarcerated individuals have opportunities to engage in pro-social programs and activities that assist in a reduction of recidivism.
03/12/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Update on Supreme Court Ruling That Voids Statute Has Potential Implications for Sentences Imposed by Courts
TUMWATER – On February 25, 2021, the Washington State Supreme Court issued an opinion in State of Washington v. Blake (pdf), declaring that RCW 69.50.4013 (Washington’s simple possession of a controlled substance statute) violates the due process clause of the state and federal constitutions and is therefore void.
03/11/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Washington Department of Corrections Names Adrian Thompson as Interim Equity & Inclusion Administrator
TUMWATER – Washington Department of Corrections Names Adrian Thompson as Interim Equity & Inclusion Administrator
03/10/2021 | Women’s History Month: Representation in Corrections
March is Women’s History Month.
03/05/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Supreme Court Ruling That Voids Statute Has Potential Implications for Sentences Imposed by Courts
TUMWATER – A recent state Supreme Court ruling that voids Washington’s simple possession of a controlled substance statute may have possible implications for sentences imposed by the courts.
03/03/2021 | Remembering Chase Riveland – A life-long advocate for criminal justice reform
Chase Riveland, former Secretary of the Washington State Department of Corrections, passed away on January 30, 2021.
03/01/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Department of Corrections Names Jacque Coe as Communications Director
TUMWATER – Secretary Stephen Sinclair has named Jacque Coe as Communications Director for the Washington Department of Corrections, effective March 1, 2021.

February

02/24/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: May 2021 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) May 2021 meeting list.
02/17/2021 | Washington and Oregon Lawmakers to Introduce Federal Legislation Advocating for Family Diversion Programs as Prison Alternative
OLYMPIA – Jenny Iredale missed a huge chunk of her daughter’s life while she was incarcerated.
02/10/2021 | Manufacturing Opportunities
At the Correctional Industries’ Textile Factory, located in the Airway Heights Corrections Center in Spokane County, you will see there are professional uniforms being produced for various state agencies.
02/09/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Fifth COVID-19 Related Incarcerated Death at Stafford Creek
TUMWATER – On February 9, 2021, an individual incarcerated at Stafford Creek Corrections Center in Aberdeen, Wash. passed away at a community healthcare facility due to COVID-19.
02/05/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Fourth and Fifth COVID-19 Related Incarcerated Deaths at Airway Heights
TUMWATER – On the dates of January 26 and January 29, 2021, two individuals, both incarcerated at Airway Heights Corrections Center in Airway Heights, Wash., passed away at community healthcare facilities due to COVID-19.
02/03/2021 | DOC 101
Prison systems have been in existence for centuries, evolving from isolated colonies or dungeons to buildings with bars, and from inhumane chain gangs, to the current concept of mentoring and supporting those in our criminal justice system.
02/02/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Third COVID-19 Related Incarcerated Death at Airway Heights
TUMWATER – On February 2, 2021, an individual incarcerated at Airway Heights Corrections Center in Airway Heights, Wash., passed away at a community healthcare facility due to COVID-19.

January

01/27/2021 | Honoring Jayme 10 Years Later
MONROE – Correctional Officer Roland Pascua knew Jayme Biendl for about three years when she died in the line of duty in 2011.
01/26/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Secretary Stephen Sinclair Announces Retirement
TUMWATER – Stephen Sinclair, Washington State Department of Corrections Secretary, has announced his retirement effective May 1, following more than three decades of service to the state of Washington.
01/21/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Fourth COVID-19 Related Incarcerated Death at Stafford Creek
TUMWATER – On January 21, 2021, an individual incarcerated at Stafford Creek Corrections Center in Aberdeen, Wash., passed away at a community healthcare facility due to COVID-19.
01/20/2021 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: April 2021 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) April 2021 meeting list.
01/20/2021 | DOC Donates Holiday Packages of Food, Toys to Incarcerated Individuals’ Families
The COVID-19 pandemic has limited in-person contact between incarcerated individuals and extended family.
01/17/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Third COVID-19 Related Incarcerated Death at Stafford Creek
TUMWATER – On Saturday, January 16, 2021, an individual incarcerated at Stafford Creek Corrections Center in Aberdeen, Wash., passed away at a community healthcare facility due to COVID-19.
01/13/2021 | Preparing for a New Year
Each year provides a new opportunity for growth and learning.
01/10/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Second COVID-19 Related Incarcerated Death at Stafford Creek
TUMWATER – On Saturday, January 9, 2021, an individual incarcerated at Stafford Creek Corrections Center in Aberdeen, Wash., passed away at a community healthcare facility due to COVID-19.
01/01/2021 | PRESS RELEASE: Second COVID-Related Incarcerated Death at Washington State Penitentiary
TUMWATER – On December 31, 2020, an individual incarcerated at Washington State Penitentiary passed away at a local healthcare facility due to COVID-19 related illness.