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A Lieutenant with the Arizona Department of Corrections filed a whistleblower complain on March 26 claiming Director David Shinn forbid his staff from wearing masks and other protective equipment in state prisons.
The complaint submitted by Lt. Mark Hasz was sent to the Governor’s office. Lt. Hasz stated Shinn personally directed staff during a meeting at Lewis Prison that they could not wear their own PPE (personal protective equipment).
Lt. Hasz further stated the reason for the order was that Director Shinn believed the masks would “scare the inmates”.
After the whistleblower complaint became public, the DOC changed course.
Director David Shinn sent an email Friday morning to announce a policy shift. “We have just been notified of the impending direction CDC will be issuing recommendations for people to wear a non-medical mask (non-PPE) upon leaving home,” Shinn wrote. He added, “This will further reduce the potential transmission exposure our staff presents to the inmate population.”
Carlos Garcia, Executive Director of the Arizona Correctional Peace Officers Association stated “Wear the mask. We will defend you. If they make you take the mask off, I swear I will defend you whether you are a member or not.”
Arizona’s prison system has more than 42,000 inmates and 9,000 employees.
The post AZ DOC Director Bans Employees From Wearing Masks Because They Are Scary, Then Reverses Decision appeared first on America's Keepers.