EMDC Lockdown To Be Lifted

A six day lockdown at the Elgin Middlesex Detention Centre is prompting the province to review the operational procedures at all jails across Ontario.

Correctional officers at EMDC entered into a work refusal after six employees were fired last week for allegedly not following proper procedures during the beating death of inmate Adam Kargus in October of 2013.

“Operational procedures are not followed on a daily basis. We’re directed at different times not to follow them. The Ministry of Correctional Services is telling us on one hand not to follow them, then they’re telling us on the other hand if you don’t follow them you can be disciplined up to dismissal,” says OPSEU Corrections Chair Dan Sidsworth. “We’re telling the Ministry to¬†give us clear direction on what to do so that we’re operating in a safe manner so that the inmates know what the routines are and what’s expected of them. You don’t off handedly change how you’re doing things, that causes friction between the correctional officers and the inmates.”

The lockdown at EMDC will be lifted gradually in the coming days as correctional officers conduct a cell-by-cell search for contraband and weapons.

Workers at the facility allege it is over crowded, under staffed and employees are not properly trained to deal with situations that arise on a regular basis.

Another inmate faces a second degree murder charge in the death of Adam Kargus. Two former corrections officers and one manager at EMDC face criminal charges of failing to provide the necessities of life.

All of those cases are still before the courts.