FORSYTH, Ga. — The state's prison system is cutting jobs and inviting some of its non-corrections staff to apply for new jobs "behind the wire."
Several Department of Corrections staffers contacted 13WMAZ this week, saying the state agency held meetings this week at its Forsyth headquarters with workers from around the state.
One worker shared a form that stated "Your current job will end on November 15, 2019" and invited employees to list jobs and locations they'd like to move to.
The form warns employees that they're not guaranteed to get their choice of jobs and lists the choices as Correctional Officer, Food Service, Maintenance, Counseling and Other.
An email from Gwendolyn Hogan to all the department's employees says, in part, "We have streamlined our processes and efficiencies first, in order to assure we accomplish this mission of protecting the public by running safe and secure facilities. All impacted employees have been notified. I ask that we rally around our affect employees and support them as they transition into their new roles...."
Hogan, who is executive director to Commissioner Timothy C. Ward, declined comment Thursday and referred questions to the department's public-affairs office.
Although employees told 13WMAZ that the cuts will affect more than 200 people, Hogan would not confirm that.
By email, spokeswoman Kasandra Ortiz wrote, "The GDC has strategically selected positions to be reallocated inside our facilities statewide, as well as reassigned others within our facilities to fill mission-driven positions. By relocating these positions behind the wire, the agency has bolstered its efforts to ensure the safety and security of our facilities as well as the public."
According to its website, the state prison system employees more than 12,000 people statewide.
The system's headquarters are in Monroe County, which lists the Department of Corrections as the county's second-leading employer.
Editor's note: The video in this article is from a 2019 13WMAZ investigation on how contraband gets into Georgia's prisons.
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