OCSEA led opponents speaking out against the Dept. of Rehabilitation and Correction announced closure of the Hocking Correctional Institution. OCSEA President Chris Mabe called the closure "disheartening," especially given overcrowding in the state prison system and the potential impact on an already-hurting community. "That's 110 jobs in an area that can't afford to lose 110 jobs," said Mabe.
The Hocking prison has 110 staff members, with approximately 86 of those union members of OCSEA, Ohio's largest state employee union.
After learning about the closure, union leaders met with senior DR&C officials to discuss ways to ensure job opportunities to those affected. DR&C has made a commitment that everyone who wants a job within the agency will have one. We're going to hold their feet to the fire," said Mabe. Union officials from the Hocking and Lancaster facilities are meeting at OCSEA this week to discuss options.
While rumors had swirled for a year about the facility closing, the union is still disappointed about the announcement. “It’s still a shock and will be a big loss to that community,” said Mabe. Read President Mabe's full statement on the closure.
President Mabe also made statements about the disappoint through Ohio media outlets: