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Nurses follow suit over prison privatization suit

by Dara Kam | January 26th, 2012

The Florida Nurses Association has filed a lawsuit against the state corrections department over a prison health care privatization effort ordered by lawmakers in the budget last year.

The nurses are using the same argument that the Florida Police Benevolent Association successfully used to kill a prison privatization plan also included in the budget. A Tallahassee judge ruled that the way lawmakers went about the outsourcing was unconstitutional and needed instead to be the subject of a stand-alone bill.

The Department of Corrections is now taking bids to privatize all health services to the state’s 100,000 inmates. The outsourcing would put more than 1,000 nurses and other health care professionals now working for DOC out of a job, according to FNA director of labor relations Jeanie Demshar.

“We believe that any effort to turn thousands of state employee jobs over to private companies needs to be vetted by the public, with input from those workers,’’ Demshar said in a statement.

The suit was filed on Tuesday in the Leon County Circuit Court, where Judge Jackie Fulford scrapped the privatization of all corrections operations – affecting more than two dozen facilities and nearly 4,000 workers – in the 18-county southern portion of the state from Polk County to the Florida Keys.

Lawmakers are now reviving the prison privatization plan, slated for a Senate vote on Tuesday.

Read the lawsuit here.

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3 Responses to “Nurses follow suit over prison privatization suit”

  1. Fair Opportunity Says:

    The public can’t continue to fund prisons through their taxes. Too many groups take advantage of that.

    Let’s see what private industry can do.

    Jobs will be available.

    Fair Opportunity is needed to try other methods.

  2. Jill Aronofsky Says:

    The Taxpayers of Florida cannnot afford PRIVATIZATION. These are for profit corporations. They’re in it strictly for the money. Their record of sloppy management, escapes, deaths, riots and understaffing is unacceptable. Anyone agreeing with a”YES” vote has something to gain. These companies are spending $$$$$$MILLIONS lobbying at the local,state and federal goverments. At a riot in North Fork, Okla operated and run by CCA, NURSES had to assist, because the facility was short of TRAINED STAFF. This is definitely not in a NURSES JOB DESCRIPTION. People better wake up to what’s going on, who is doing it, and vote them out of office. Especially ,the President of the Florida State Senate, Mike Haridopolos, who removed Senator Mike Fasano, from his Committee Chair, because he opposed PRVIATIZATION.

  3. Jill Aronofsky Says:

    You can read all about these corporations on the internet, CCA, and GEO. Go to Why I Hate CCA. On the internet type in CORRECTION CORPORATION OF AMERICA.You won’t believe how much material there is on this subject, which will validate my above comments. I suggest people do their “HOMEWORK” and then make an informed decision. We cannot afford PRIVATIZATION. We cannot let politicians act as “School Yard Bullies” (quote from Sen.Fasano). Sen Fasano has a reputation to be ethical,and morally correct. He won’t stand for being intimidated to vote for this bill. He’s received tremendous support from around the state and greatly deserves it.

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