Tuesday, August 28, 2007

NY Times scribe seeks sources on TDCJ, TYC understaffing woes

New York Times criminal justice correspondent Solomon Moore is in Texas this week working on a couple of future stories, and I was flattered that he asked if Grits readers might be able to help him out. "You run a helluva blog, man," he told me on the phone, so while we've got him fooled, I hope y'all will continue to sell this Potemkin illusion by assisting with his story.

In particular, Mr. Moore wants to examine understaffing issues at Texas adult AND juvenile prison systems - at TDCJ and TYC, in other words - and the consequences of failing to adequately staff those facilities. There are many, of course: Increased violence, road deaths after long shifts, skyrocketing employee turnover, substituting prisoner labor for guards, and others. He's particularly hoping employees will speak up, family members, public officials, or anybody else with firsthand knowledge; he's also willing to maintain confidentiality for those who fear retaliation.

Email Moore at smoore[at]nytimes.com if you'd like to provide him information on this topic. Thanks, folks!


Anonymous said...

Gee, Scott, did you miss this story yesterday?


Funny that you wouldn't write about it or even acknowledge it.

Anonymous said...

This issue has been very big for a long time.

Gritsforbreakfast said...

@8:40 - Say who you are, troll, then I'll care about your opinion.

FWIW the Hutto item was actually on my list for a roundup this week - it was in the NY Times so it's not like I need to promote it. But given that you're probably one of my former ACLU colleagues who still enjoy taking anonymous cheap shots at me, maybe I'll just ignore that story until you find the huevos to stand behind your snarky words.

Sorry, folks. It's been a year since I left ACLU of Texas, and the backstabbing ingrates who ran me off apparently still can't stop lashing out. I thought about deleting this off-topic comment, but figured it would feed the writer's overblown sense of self importance. So would responding to him or her further. Let's talk about the subject of the original post instead. best,

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous,8:40AM

Scott in the past has wrote about the prison for children in Taylor, Texas, but unfortunately he didn't care to write all that much about it. I found only two stories that Scott has written in the past on the topic and there wasn't much discussion on either story. That's sort of sad on Scotts part I think. Then again in his very short articles, he did give links to other "blogger's" that felt it was important for the public to be aware of what the government is doing to the children in Taylor Texas.



Maybe Scott doesn't have time to worry about the innocent immigrant children and how they are treated in his own back yard, after all he is a busy man worrying about the criminal kids of Texas

Anonymous said...

BTW, the last comment wasn't made by a troll, just a long time fan of yours Scott. I know you're a busy man and you can't write about all the injustice in Texas.

But what you do write about is a great help to the people of Texas.

Keep up the great work!

A non troll.

Anonymous said...

I love you Scott, keep up the good work. I have links to your blogs on my spots on the web. I discuss your blogs enlightening many who are unaware. I print your blogs and send to various interested parties. We appreciate all your hard work!

Don't let the few negative attitudes spin a web of distraction here...you have many supporters who are behind you all the way.

Gritsforbreakfast said...

Thanks for the clarification, non-troll. Just to have said it, immigration has always been a secondary topic on this blog, and as you mentioned, the Hutto case isn't one I've covered much, but other bloggers are working on it. We can't all write about everything, and many topics I cover are typically much-ignored, not just in the blogosphere but in the MSM. Plus, as I said, I'd intended to cover it in a roundup. best,

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the email address. I've been out of TYC for a little over a month now and am in a place where I can talk about what I know.

Almost outta here is now actually outta here. :)

Anonymous said...

Everyone, don't miss this opportunity! There's so much to tell about this problem at TDCJ if the right people talk.

Spill, people!

Anonymous said...

I don't have first hand knowledge. I have heard the criticism of BPP for not granting parole to Trustees. The reason is that TDCJ prison's need the Trustee labor. Now I have heard that TDCJ quickly makes anyone they believe will receive parole a Trustee so the statistics will look better.

This is definately a part of the labor shortage within TDCJ. I do hope anyone with first hand knowledge of the manipulation of the statistics will share their knowoledge.

Anonymous said...

Dude, that's hilarious and f'in awesome!

The next time someone tells me blogs are a waste of time, I'll say when the NY Times wants news about Texas justice they go Grits for Breakfast, just like me. And your blog's no "Potemkin illusion," man, you're the real thing. Way to go!

Anonymous said...

Yes, with the coverage in the New York Times, Washington Post and 200+ other publications, the ACLU will crumble if you don't write about Hutto. But way to be paranoid and assume one of your former colleagues made the post!

Anonymous said...

did i miss something? no one has come forth to take responsiblity for the posting, i'd lay off the paranoid accusations. I think the blogmaster probably knows the style and nature of his adversaries.

Anonymous said...

It hasn't been so long that there were 7 escapees from south Texas that killed a cop in Dallas and were finally picked up after a nationwide manhunt. As I recall, one of the reasons given by the guards involved was the shortage of staff. Included was the information that the captured guard managed to trigger the fire alarm that nobody responded to because nobody was available to check.

Anonymous said...

Well, i think we could shine some light on a whole bunch of things.


email us at: backgate_website@yahoo.com

we will be happy to assist...