Meeting Held with Corrections regarding Taser Implementation
MAGE members will recall my recent email discussing our concerns with taser deployments (below). This is to inform you that we recently convened a successful meeting with MDOC staff, Michael Curley, CFA Operations Administrator and Kathy Warner, Administrative Assistant to Chief Deputy Director. I am pleased to report that staff are already acutely aware of these issues. The Department understands that the decision to deploy or not to deploy is not always an easy one. After discussing some of these incidents with Mike Curley, I can tell you that I am relieved that we have an employee reviewing deployments that actually spent some time in the trenches and participated in taser training.
MAGE discussed the need for ongoing training and the concerns of members regarding the location of the camera on the grip, causing the inadvertent covering of the lens. We also discussed the requirement of keeping the taser pointed at a human, which countervails every rule that Officers are taught about the use of firearms, which of course, brought us back around to the training. Also discussed was the issue of inmates ordering oversized clothes to protect against the taser.
Finally, on another subject, MAGE members will recall that in 2006, MAGE argued for and secured a special raise for Sergeants, Lieutenants, Captains and Inspectors due to a pay compression and recruitment and retention problem in those ranks. We are now hearing similar complaints. If you have information regarding this issue, we need to know about it. Send responses to John DeTizio at email@example.com.
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: Taser Implementation Warning
This notice is to advise you that MAGE has experienced a dramatic increase in the amount of disciplinary actions due to Taser use. We believe that this is due in part to ambiguous language in the regulations and policies regarding implementation of the tasers and a lack of adequate training focusing on specific circumstances when tasers should be employed.
This notice is to warn you that, until MAGE has had a chance to meet with DOC officials regarding this problem, you will need to take special precautions and use restraint in taser employment. Keep in mind these are not minor disciplinary actions resulting from taser use. We are talking about dismissals.
Please follow your MAGE web page for updates on this important issue and if you have specific concerns regarding this issue or any other issues, please call the MAGE office at 1-800-477-6243 to schedule a lunch or dinner meeting for you and your fellow NEREs near your institution.
Our Labor Relations Director, John DeTizio and I would be pleased to come to your work place, any time, day shift or night shift, any where, to update you on the progress on our 4% lawsuit and our 3% lawsuit and to discuss our new enhanced MAGE benefits. We will also pick up the tab for any lunch or dinner meeting you choose to schedule for members or potential MAGE members who do not know what we do for them, day in and day out.