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News Archive

2024

May

5/22/2024 | Transforming Lives: The Success of WSP’s Prison Fellowship Program
In 2019, the Washington State Penitentiary (WSP) launched a transformative Prison Fellowship program, aiming to foster rehabilitation and community among incarcerated individuals.
5/15/2024 | Breaking the Cycle: How Washington State’s Housing Specialists are Reducing Recidivism
In Washington state, the Department of Corrections is making strides to reduce recidivism through housing assistance programs facilitated by housing specialists.
5/8/2024 | Crisis Negotiators: A Key Piece for Success
The Crisis Negotiations Teams at the Washington State Department of Corrections are frontline stars, working tirelessly to de-escalate crises within correctional facilities.
5/1/2024 | National Nurses Month: Making a Difference
As we celebrate National Nurses Month, it is vital to shine a spotlight on a special group of healthcare professionals: correctional nurses.

April

4/30/2024 | PRESS RELEASE: Escapee from Monroe Correctional Complex Apprehended
MONROE – 59-year-old Patrick Lester Clay (DOC 908566) was apprehended without incident in the Beacon Hill neighborhood of Seattle Monday night – he is back in custody with the Washington State Department of Corrections where he will be placed in restrictive housing.
4/26/2024 | PRESS RELEASE: Department of Corrections & Monroe Police Department Searching for Minimum Security Incarcerated Individual Escaped from Monroe Correctional Complex
MONROE – A minimum security incarcerated individual has escaped from the Minimum Security Unit at the Monroe Correctional Complex in Monroe, Washington.
4/25/2024 | Reflecting on Second Chance Month
As April draws to a close, so too does Second Chance Month. This time was used as a period of reflection and action for criminal justice organizations and the agencies they partner with.
4/17/2024 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: April 2024 Hearings
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) April 2024 hearings list.
4/17/2024 | Mission Creek Corrections Center for Women Launches First Facility–Wide Contact Employee Program
In a symbolic event marked by hope and collaboration, Mission Creek Corrections Center for Women (MCCCW) unveiled its Contact Employee Program with a ceremonial ribbon cutting.
4/10/2024 | Washington’s Way Forward: Reentry Centers Reimagined
The Wenatchee Valley Reentry Center, inaugurated in September 2023, marked a significant milestone in Washington state's approach to rehabilitation and community integration.
4/8/2024 | PRESS RELEASE: Imagination Library of Washington Brings Transformative Literacy Initiative to WA DOC State Prison Visit Rooms
TUMWATER – This week is National Library Week. The 2024 theme is “Ready, Set, Library,” and what better time to announce a unique prison partnership between Imagination Library of Washington, the statewide partner for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, and the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) to bring an innovative and exciting early literacy program to prison visit rooms.
4/3/2024 | Embracing Second Chances
Second Chance Month serves as a poignant reminder of the transformative power of redemption and the importance of providing opportunities for individuals who have completed their sentences to reintegrate into society.

March

3/27/2024 | Giving Incarcerated Women a Voice and a Choice
March is Women’s History Month – a time to celebrate the contributions women have made to the world. This year, we are excited to share the story of contributions made by incarcerated individuals.
3/6/2024 | The Father-Daughter Dance at Cedar Creek Corrections Center
At Cedar Creek Correctional Center, days can often be a little monotonous, but recently an event brought color, music, and laughter to the facility.

February

2/28/2024 | Best Wishes to a Respected Colleague and Friend: Jeff Uttecht
Jeff Uttecht's journey in the realm of corrections began in 1981 when he took on the role of a correctional officer in South Dakota.
2/21/2024 | Financial Freedom: The Empowerment of Education
The Office of the State Treasurer joined forces with the Department of Corrections to introduce a transformative financial education workshop series at Mission Creek Corrections Center for Women.
2/14/2024 | Black History Month 2024: Celebrating African Americans and the Arts
February marks Black History Month, an annual celebration recognizing the significant contributions of African Americans to our society.
2/7/2024 | Clallam Bay Swiftly Responds to Medical Emergency
On a frigid winter morning at the Clallam Bay Corrections Center on January 14, 2024, a routine day took a dramatic turn when an incarcerated individual had a life-threatening medical emergency.
2/2/2024 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: December 2023 Hearings
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) December 2023 hearings list.

January

1/31/2024 | Reimagine WCC: Streamlining Rehabilitations First Step
In a celebration at Washington Corrections Center (WCC) in Shelton, Washington, the dedicated efforts of various divisions involved in the Reimagine WCC project were honored.
1/24/2024 | The Blossoming Journey of Tammy: From Silence to Soil
In the heart of the Medium Security Unit yards at the Washington Corrections Center for Women (WCCW), among the soil and seeds, resides the remarkable transformation story of incarcerated individual Tammy.
1/17/2024 | PRESS RELEASE: DOC Assistant Secretary & Former State Senator Jeannie Darneille Retires After Distinguished Career
TUMWATER – Department of Corrections (DOC) Assistant Secretary and former State Senator Jeannie Darneille has announced her retirement from state service.
1/17/2024 | Constructing Success After Prison
Finding a job is one of the most challenging obstacles for formerly incarcerated individuals.
1/3/2024 | The Impact of Unkitawa: Supporting Indigenous Incarcerated Individuals in Washington State
The collaboration between the non-profit organization Unkitawa and the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) represents a crucial partnership that addresses the unique needs faced by indigenous individuals during and after incarceration.

2023

Spotlights

8/1/2023 | News Spotlight: Best Bed Project (Updated)
The Best Bed Project is dedicated to ensuring every incarcerated individual in our care and custody receives the housing assignment to serve their court-ordered sentence that gives them the mental health, educational, programming and health care access best suited to meet their needs.
7/14/2023 | News Spotlight: Humanity in Corrections - Suicide Prevention in Prisons
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide is one of the leading causes of death in the United States.
7/6/2023 | News Spotlight: Larch Corrections Center Closure
After careful consideration the Washington State Department of Corrections will be warm closing Larch Corrections Center (LCC) in October 2023.
6/30/2023 | News Spotlight: Humanity in Corrections - Treating Complex Mental Health Disorders in Prisons
Footsteps echo loudly off concrete walls. A loud, angry voice can be heard one moment, soft whispers the next. A corrections officer checks in through the scratched glass of a narrow cell window, to ask how an individual is doing today.
4/19/2023 | News Spotlight: Cultural Programming at DOC
Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) has seen an increase in questions and concerns regarding cultural programming, specifically rumors stating that DOC will only allow cultural groups to meet once a year.
4/18/2023 | News Spotlight: DOC Transgender Housing Policy
The Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) strongly emphasizes the importance of inclusion and representation by recognizing the unique challenges that non-binary and transgender incarcerated people face.
2/8/2023 | News Spotlight: Individual Technology Services Update
To date, we have completed the full implementation and Go–Live of Securus phone service at all Prisons facilities.

December

12/20/2023 | Incarcerated Women Transform Governor’s Mansion for the Holidays
In a heartwarming display of transformation, a group of incarcerated women from DOC horticulture programs recently had the unique opportunity to decorate the Governor’s Mansion with their handmade decorations.

November

11/29/2023 | Graduated Reentry Success: David’s Story
I entered the justice system at the youthful age of 20, facing 60 years in prison for violent felonies.
11/21/2023 | ISRB Press Release: November 2023 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) November 2023 hearings list.
11/15/2023 | Graduated Reentry: A Path Forward
The Graduated Reentry Program (GRE) is a program within the Department of Corrections that aims to allow for more normalization for incarcerated individuals in their release process.
11/8/2023 | Cell to Cell: Creating Connection in a New Age
The Washington State Department of Corrections’ partnership with Amend is a crucial part of creating a more humane corrections system in Washington state.
11/1/2023 | The Department of Change: Amending Reentry for All
The reentry process is a crucial aspect of every incarcerated individuals’ success in effectively reintegrating with society after incarceration.

October

10/18/2023 | PRESS RELEASE: DOC Takes Next Step Towards Reducing the Use of Solitary Confinement
TUMWATER – Earlier this year, Department of Corrections (DOC) Secretary Cheryl Strange pledged to reduce the use of solitary confinement in Washington state prisons by 90% over the next five years.
10/18/2023 | Narcotic Detection Dog Handlers Celebrate Graduation
On one of the final days of summer, the Department of Corrections (DOC) Headquarters was filled with excitement and anticipation as DOC staff and Sherriff Deputies from Thurston County, Okanogan County, and Deputies from Chelan County Regional Justice Center gathered to witness the graduation of the newest teams of K9 narcotic dog handlers.
10/11/2023 | PRESS RELEASE: DOC and Disability Rights Washington Agree to Changes to Treatment of Transgender Incarcerated Individuals
TUMWATER – The Department of Corrections (DOC) and Disability Rights Washington (DRW) have reached an agreement that will further improve the conditions of confinement for transgender individuals in the department’s care and custody.
10/11/2023 | Powwows Celebrate Culture, Aim to Reduce Recidivism
The prison system in the United States has often been criticized for its high recidivism rates, indicating that many incarcerated individuals return to prison after their release.
10/9/2023 | PRESS RELEASE: Larch Corrections Center to Officially Close
TUMWATER – Following a ruling in the Department of Corrections’ favor by a Clark County judge Monday, Larch Corrections Center (LCC), a minimum-security facility near Yacolt, will officially close October 10th. All incarcerated individuals have already gone through the classification process and were transferred to facilities throughout the state.
10/4/2023 | KUBI Camp Returns After COVID Hiatus
Camp Dudley, a picturesque YMCA camp on the shores of Clear Lake east of White Pass, has sat eerily quiet in mid-August since 2019.

September

9/27/2023 | Sustainability in Prisons Project Celebrates 20 Years of Sustainable Change
The Sustainability in Prisons Project (SPP) celebrated a significant milestone as they marked its 20th anniversary of pioneering environmental and correctional reform.
9/20/2023 | Empowerment and Healing: The Power of Powwows in Women’s Prisons
Connecting with one’s culture has shown to be a useful tool during stages of rehabilitation. One innovative approach that continues to gain traction over the years is the incorporation of powwows within prisons.
9/18/2023 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: October 2023 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) October 2023 hearings list.
9/15/2023 | 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 two representatives on its advisory committee.
9/13/2023 | Food For Thought: SPP Gardening Program Donates to Local Food Banks
Amidst the walls of Washington State Department of Corrections facilities, a transformative program has taken root, nurturing not just gardens but also the spirits of incarcerated individuals.
9/6/2023 | Embracing Culture Within Prisons (Updated)
Washington State Department of Corrections recently organized a series of family-friendly events within the correctional facilities across the state to commemorate Asian Pacific Islander Month.

August

8/23/2023 | Nurturing Bonds Behind Bars: Washington State's Residential Parenting Program
Washington State Department of Corrections’ Residential Parenting Program (RPP) reshapes the lives of incarcerated mothers and their babies.
8/17/2023 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: September 2023 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) September 2023 hearings list.
8/17/2023 | Beekeeping: A Sustainability in Prisons Project
In an innovative approach to rehabilitation, prisons around Washington State have supported honeybee programs that offer incarcerated individuals a unique opportunity to learn new skills and to contribute positively to society.
8/9/2023 | Concerts for Hope: Washington Prisons Hosts Classical Concerts
Concerts for Hope, a nonprofit led by musician and composer Eric Genuis, embarked on a transformative journey to uplift the spirits of those residing within Washington's prisons

July

7/19/2023 | DOC and South Seattle College Celebrates 25 Years of Turning Lives Around
The Justice Involved Solutions Unit at South Seattle College is guided by its mission to create a welcoming, supportive, and respectful learning environment for currently and formerly justice-involved students as they transition from the inside/out.
7/18/2023 | PRESS RELEASE: Megan Pirie Appointed Director of Person-Centered Services
TUMWATER – Department of Corrections' (DOC) Secretary Cheryl Strange has appointed Megan Pirie as the agency’s Director of Person-Centered Services. Pirie is the second person to hold the position, which was created by Strange to incorporate the voice and perspective of incarcerated individuals into DOC’s practices and policies.
7/12/2023 | Embracing Culture Within Prisons
Washington State Department of Corrections recently organized a series of family-friendly events within the correctional facilities across the state to commemorate Asian Pacific Islander Month.
7/10/2023 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: August 2023 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) August 2023 hearings list.
7/5/2023 | Crafting Confidence: Incarcerated Individual Designed Conference Table Empowers Rehabilitation
Correctional Industries is transforming the lives of incarcerated individuals through rehabilitation programs that foster skill-building, confidence, and a path to a brighter future.

June

6/28/2023 | Juneteenth: Celebrating Freedom While Incarcerated
Each year on June 19, Americans have the opportunity to celebrate Juneteenth – a time to commemorate the freedom of African Americans with the ending of chattel slavery in 1865 in the United States.
6/26/2023 | PRESS RELEASE: DOC Pledges to Drastically Reduce Use of Solitary Confinement and Announces Closure of Minimum-Security Prison
TUMWATER – The Department of Corrections is taking steps to address fewer incarcerated individuals reoffending and returning to DOC custody while also committing to reduce the use of solitary confinement in its prisons by 90% over the next five years.
6/22/2023 | Incarcerated Students Triumph
This month, a wave of celebration is sweeping across correctional facilities in Washington State as incarcerated individuals proudly don their caps and gowns to mark their college graduations.
6/15/2023 | PRESS RELEASE: South Seattle College and DOC Continue to Prepare Justice-Involved Students for a Brighter Future
SEATTLE – South Seattle College will host its spring graduation ceremony this weekend for Justice Involved Solutions (JIS) students.
6/14/2023 | The IF Project: The Question…
“If there was something someone could have said or done to change the path that led you here, what would it have been?”
6/7/2023 | Strength in Families Receives the Lee Ann Miller Award
The Children’s Justice Conference, an extraordinary event held annually, has emerged as a transformative platform dedicated to providing professionals with training, skills and development in the identification, investigation and prosecution of child maltreatment.

May

5/31/2023 | Correctional Nurse’s Share Their Story
Approximately 460 nurses provide the majority of medical care needed for the individuals incarcerated in Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) facilities.
5/24/2023 | Patient Centered Medical Home: The Evolution of Healthcare in Prisons
The Department of Corrections is excited to celebrate the one-year anniversary of its Patient Centered Medical Home pilot project.
5/22/2023 | 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.
5/17/2023 | Reentry Assistant Secretary Wins Prestigious Award as Washington Hosts National Corrections Conference
The Washington State Department of Corrections’ very own Danielle Armbruster won the prestigious Rodli Award at this year’s National Correctional Industries Association (NCIA) conference in Bellevue, Washington.
5/15/2023 | Excessive Heat Warning (pdf)
The Department of Corrections is committed to operating safe and humane facilities, especially during the current excessive heat wave.
5/10/2023 | Crime Victims’ Rights Event
National Crime Victims’ Rights Week (NCVRW) is held during the week of April 23-29.
5/8/2023 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: July 2023 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) July 2023 hearings list.
5/3/2023 | Thanking Correctional Nurses
Approximately 460 nurses provide the majority of medical care needed for the individuals incarcerated in Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) facilities.

April

4/13/2023 | Jill Getty Appointed to the Indeterminate Sentence Review Board
Gov. Jay Inslee has appointed Jilly Getty as the newest member of the Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB).
4/12/2023 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: June 2023 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) June 2023 hearings list.
4/12/2023 | Thinking for a Change: Encouraging Positive Change in Incarcerated Individuals
The Thinking for a Change class is one of many programs the Department of Corrections is using to change the way prisons approach rehabilitation and reentry.
4/5/2023 | Reentry Matters – Celebrating Second Chance Month
Each April, the Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) celebrates Second Chance Month by reaffirming the importance of helping incarcerated individuals reenter society.

March

3/22/2023 | New Water Source Supplies McNeil Island
After seven years of planning, drilling and testing, McNeil Island has a new water source.
3/17/2023 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: May 2023 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) May 2023 hearings list.
3/15/2023 | Detection Dog Training to Keep Drugs Off Streets
Keeping illegal drugs out of our community is tough task that takes a lot of effort from law enforcement to keep our communities safe.
3/8/2023 | Amend: How We Create Better Neighbors
In 2020, the department partnered with Amend at the University of California San Francisco to bring a health-focused approach to transforming the culture inside Washington’s prisons and reentry centers.
3/6/2023 | PRESS RELEASE: DOC Names New Tribal Relations Director
OLYMPIA — Washington State Department of Corrections (DOC) Secretary Cheryl Strange has appointed Colleen Cawston as the agency’s Tribal Relations Director.

February

2/22/2023 | ISRB PRESS RELEASE: April 2023 Hearings (pdf)
The Indeterminate Sentence Review Board (ISRB) April 2023 hearings list.
2/17/2023 | PRESS RELEASE: Memorial Service to Be Held for Longtime Correctional Officer
OLYMPIA - A memorial service will be held next week to honor Washington State Department of Corrections Correctional Officer Jay Miller. Miller passed away on Feb. 11 after a long battle with COVID-19 complications.
2/15/2023 | Therapeutic Training Is Helping Incarcerated Achieve Sobriety
The Therapeutic Community Training program has made its return to prisons across the state after a four-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 virus.
2/8/2023 | Trauma–Informed Training at DOC
Washington State Department of Corrections’ (DOC) is excited to share news about upcoming Trauma Informed Training that focuses on interactions with families impacted by incarceration.
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 hearings list.

2022

Spotlights

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.
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.
8/9/2022 | 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.
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.
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.

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 | 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 Incarcerated Individuals
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.
8/10/2022 | 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.
8/5/2022 | 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.
6/1/2022 | 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.
5/5/2022 | 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 reentry centers 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.