“Facility of the Year” Awarded in Vermont

SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt. — Each year, the National Commission on Correctional Health Care (NCCHC) recognizes a standout facility and presents them with the Facility of Year award. For 2012, the Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility (CRCF) was presented with the prestigious honor.

CRCF in South Burlington, Vt., was selected for its variety of inmate programs and features that make it unique in the correctional market. CRCF was selected from nearly 500 prisons, jails and juvenile facilities accredited by NCCHC.

CRCF is operated by the Vermont Department of Corrections, who also accepted the Facility of the Year award by NCCHC. The facility is a minimum-maximum security facility that houses inmates from three counties as well as transfers from other state facilities and some federal detainees, according to NCCHC. To-date, the daily population of the facility is near 185 inmates.

The programs offered at CRCF were highlighted in the selection process because of the commitment to rehabilitation, among others. One of the programs commended is family oriented and sets out to help incarcerated mothers. The Kids-A-Part-Parenting-Program (KAPPP), provided by the Lund Family Center, a community-based family support organization, develops customized service plans that address both children’s needs and the mother’s goal for reentry, according to NCCHC.

Correct Care Solutions (CCS) managed many of the programs in a partnership with the Vermont DOC.

“This award is a direct result of the vision and programs instituted by the Vermont DOC; it demonstrates both their dedication to the individuals housed within their facilities and the quality of the staff, from CCS and the Vermont DOC, that work daily to improve the lives of Vermont DOC facility residents,” said Jerry Boyle, president of CCS in a statement.

Other programs at the facility are also provided in hopes of rehabilitating inmates and giving them the tools they need to reduce recidivism. The nonprofit, Phoenix House of New England for example, provide substance abuse treatment services to the women, and the Vermont Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence operates the DIVAS program, which promotes “discussing intimate violence and accessing support,” using an evidence-based, trauma-informed approach, according to NCCHC. If these programs do not address the needs of certain inmates, other programs like Vermont Works for Women is also in place, which facilitates hiring coordination and training for employment at CRCF, prerelease employment planning, mentoring and other services that the majority of inmates can participate in.

The Facility of the Year award of course looked at health care at the facility as well. CRCF scored high marks in terms of health care, with routine health care provided to inmates as well as a 24/7 health care staff on the premises. The facility has been accredited by NCCHC since 1998 and in its latest survey was found to be 100 percent compliant with the standards, according to NCCHC.

“Overall, the team that selected CRCF as Facility of the Year was impressed with how well staff consistently demonstrated excellence in health services delivery, correctional health care professionalism and a commitment to mothers and their children,” according to a statement by NCCHC.