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Old 02-05-2018, 12:42 AM
DisneyFan DisneyFan is offline
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Default Visit and vent

My son is at work release, but that forum doesn't get much traffic. I made my first visit today. He had told me by phone that families brought food and if I could bring chicken wings. I have visited him prior at regular prison and was well aware of all restrictions. To be safe on my first visit I checked the website for the work release center and there was no rules for visitation

I should preface this by saying I am disabled and recently was diagnosed with more degeneration in my spine. Long drives and rain are not ideal situations for me Today I had both. So after church, I picked up wings at publix and started my journey.

Visibility was horrible in the rain and thank goodness for my gps because as most know these places are in off the beaten path.
Once I arrived the rain picked up and the one handicap space was taken. I chose my cane over my walker. Upon getting to the entrance there was a sign No cellphones beyond here. (I had mine on me because The inmates are allowed cellphones so I didn't think it was restricted). I hobbled back to the car and locked my cell inside.

When I got to the information window there were two staff members in uniform facing the window working at desk 5 feet away. I was not acknowledged.
So I softly knocked on the window. Without looking up the man said we will be with you shortly. I waited about 15 min and 2 more got in line behind me.
Staff never said a word.

At last the man comes to the window. I explain it is my first visit at this facility.
He finds my name on the list and asks for my ID. Then he comes from behind the window to stand in front of me. He ran over questions like do you have a gun, sword, knife etc in a fairly friendly manor. Asked about cell phone. I replied I left it in car. So I put my small bag out that holds my inhaler and change purse and say do you wish to search my bag.

Then he got nasty. I mean nasty. It's too late that should be in the car. The tone and level of his voice went from pleasant to nasty in 0 seconds. I was stunned. At just that moment my son came thought the door. I embraced him.

I told guard I went on line and visited the work release website and there was no mention of specific rules or dress. I was dressed nicely First sign I saw was cell phone and I complied. He began yelling. Yes yelling I signed the paper I would comply. I said sir you presented me with no paper to sign. He brings out that list and of course there is not even a place to sign by my name and no one had signed.

Then I mentioned the chicken in the car. Well you would have thought I just admitted a crime. He yells now I will have to leave my post and accompany you to the car to get it. There will be no visit. I said sir I have been nothing but kind to you please don't yell. I am disabled and have difficulty carrying things.
I did add this is not the proper was to treat a disabled person. Then the female guard who up to this point said nothing stepped around the glass and said she would go with me to the car. I was very low key and calm.

I get to the car get the chicken and start to put my bag in the car because he told me I couldn't have it. She said you can an entire purse. I said , that is not what the other guard told me. I thanked her and told her I hoped he was kinder to her in their working relationship.

When we got back inside he was screaming at my son about the "paper I signed". OMG. My sons face was red but he held it in. The female tried to say they follow same guidelines as all doc prisons.

Not true, I got no search, pat down. Didn't have to bring just car key in and most importantly when we got into visitation area there were no guards. All families had coolers open fountain drinks from fast food, purses. Family cooked meals. So NOT like doc one iota. My son and I were standing in front of the window and I asked him which direction wears the visitation room. Before he could answer Mr Nasty screamed the visit cannot take place here in front of the window

Sorry so long if you read this far thank you. Felt good to get it out. Needed to share this disaster. What a hateful mean man. I almost said in parting I will pray you have a better day tomorrow, but decided to take the high road. My Mama always said you can't argue with an idiot.
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Old 02-05-2018, 06:14 AM
fbopnomore fbopnomore is online now
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I hope he isn't there the next time you visit. He probably acts the same way with others too, showing how important he is because of his low paying job as a guard at a work release program, so complaining about him will probably backfire. The management absolutely knows how much of a jerk he is already, but are allowing it to continue.

I'm sorry for what happened, but glad the other employee was pleasant.
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Old 02-05-2018, 06:36 AM
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Wow! That is so awful for you, you did not say which work release you went to, and like fbopnomore, I almost would not want to complain, although if you do not, he will continue to do the same to others. Maybe after a cooling off period, you could comprise a short e-mail to the warden or who ever runs the facility to let them know what happened, and then make sure you mention the female staff member who helped you and was nice to you to off set the awful male staff member. Keep us posted.
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Old 02-05-2018, 07:51 AM
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OMG in all my years of dealing with FDOC I only had a really bad experience with one CO, and I filed a complaint and the duty warden had this CO transferred to a different area. She no longer was in the Visiting desk, search, yard, or inside where the public had to deal with her. I can't imagine dealing with what you went thru. I hated visiting because of the huge hassle visitors are put thru normally but this guy sounded like a complete jerk. I am so sorry you had to deal with this hopefully you call and file a complaint!!!
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Old 02-05-2018, 08:04 AM
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I would not call.
If I did anything it would be written in a letter with copies sent to whomever is above the warden as well.

Im so sorry you were treated like that. No cause for it.
I hope you get a better visit next time.
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Old 02-05-2018, 11:55 AM
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Today, now that the visit is behind me I don't want to stir up this hornet's nest. He appears to be a person that would take it out on my son or others. Same thing with me pointing out the very obvious lack of security so different from traditional DOC visits. Particularly if I point out the food, both home cooked and take out. That would just punish everyone. When my son was in traditional prison I visited Christmas Day and wouldn't it have been wonderful to have been able to bring a home cooked dinner with his favorites.

I don't know how these guys deal with the harassment and belittling. I told the guard without raising my voice, Sir I have been nothing but kind to you. (And I was)

I will continue to be kind to him in the future but firmly let him know I won't accept malicious humiliating treatment. I am not incarcerated and as long as I am respectfully following the rules, he doesn't have the right to be that extreme
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Old 02-06-2018, 10:04 AM
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Seems some of these CO's feel empowered and look down on us. What's sad is they have know problem being a-holes to us ... so I can only imagine what jerks they are to our loved ones. This CO needs a change of heart and a whole lotta Jesus!
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Old 02-06-2018, 10:48 AM
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The work release/transition centers should be a more welcoming place because they are preparing people to be released. Sadly, there are people working there for low pay & a need for power. I have met some great & helpful people but I also know there are jerks just like in any place. I hate that your visit started off so badly. You & your son are doing the right thing by not reacting negatively. My daughter would say that your experience should be a "teachable moment" for those in charge of visitation. If that employee doesn't like his job then reassign him to somewhere that doesn't deal with the public.

I'm glad you vented. If you'd like to make changes in a positive way then check into advocacy groups. When you stand together it's harder to single 1 person out in a complaint. Here's 1 group in Florida that might be of help- http://www.afn.org/~flip/
There are several different chapters in the Florida area.
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