MDOC still seeking to house 625 maximum security inmates at Parchman in midst of ‘critical understaffing’

MDOC still seeking to house 625 maximum security inmates at Parchman in midst of ‘critical understaffing’
Clean up continues at the Mississippi State Penitentiary's Unit 29 from the recent unrest.

JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - The Mississippi Department of Corrections is still seeking to house 625 maximum security inmates at Unit 29 of the Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman.

This after successfully moving 375 inmates to the Tallahatchie County Correctional Facility which Commissioner Pelicia E. Hall said, “provided some relief to an overstressed system.”

According to a press release Monday, MDOC cannot move the remaining inmates to the vacant Walnut Grove Correctional Facility in Leake County because the department lacks the staff and resources to operate the former private prison.

“The agency is experiencing critical understaffing at its three state prisons and needs at least 1,000 more officers for its current facilities,” the press release reads.

Because of this, MDOC is requesting $419,110,853 for their 2021 budget in hopes to fill 800 vacant positions at three state prison.

They also wish to move starting salaries for correctional officers from $25,650.41 to $30,369.82.

If approved, $22,522,280 would also go towards improvements to Unit 29.

As of Monday, the prison population in Mississippi was 18,895 inmates.

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