Interesting stories in the Texas papers about the trial. I wonder why a vice-president of the company would make the comment to a state legislator that, "the women got what they wanted," referring to the sexual harassment allegations. Again, CSC fails miserably in the public relations area. It most definetly is a culture of corporate indifference and is obviously going to cost them dearly.
Excuse me! I agree with the content of the story. But at the same time your name is on it so you must have some reason for posting it. If you see a dirty rag on the ground and you pick it up. You get dirt on your hands everytime. You never take any position on anything. I was wrong for praising you, but I will continue to critisize you for standing for nothing. Apples not aples. Your typing is getting as bad as mine.
Prisonet, here's the story THE FORT WORTH STAR-TELEGRAM
February 24, 2001
Harris takes stand in trial on boot camp; Legislator testifies that executive said women 'got what they wanted'
Anthony Spangler; Star-Telegram Staff Writer
FORT WORTH - State Sen. Chris Harris testified Friday that a senior vice president of the Mansfield boot camp's private operator told him that three women who were sexually abused by its employees "got what they wanted."
The three women, whom the Star-Telegram is not identifying, are suing Florida-based Correctional Services Corp., for an undisclosed amount for mental anguish. They say they deserve monetary damages for the sexual abuse they suffered at the Tarrant County Community Correction Facility in Mansfield.
The facility for probationers houses a boot camp and three substance abuse programs and is run by CSC. The programs are overseen by the probation department and the county's 19 criminal court judges.
Harris, R-Arlington, told 141st District Court Judge Paul Enlow that he was personally offended by the remarks by a high-ranking CSC official during a telephone call in July. Enlow is hearing the case without a jury.
"I asked him what was going on at the facility concerning the women," Harris said. "He said that I need to understand that the women locked up in a facility like this, that they had gotten what they wanted, referring to the sexual acts that took place against them. The company seemed to have no concern about what happened to the women."
After his testimony, Harris continued to criticize CSC outside the courtroom, saying the company's 19 contracts at corrections facilities in Texas should be investigated for similar problems.
Harris' interest in the boot camp's turmoil stems from his own battle with alcoholism, he said.
"I'm such a firm supporter of the boot camp because of the alcohol and drug programs there," said Harris, who said he quit drinking more than 20 years ago without any assistance. "But they have to respect the inmates there."
Attorneys representing the plaintiffs contend that a corporate culture exists in CSC that treats women as second-class inmates and disregards their complaints of sexual misconduct by male guards.
Male staff members at the Mansfield facility are not allowed to be alone with female inmates without a female staff member present, according to CSC's contract with the probation department.
But since the trial started Wednesday, several witnesses have testified that staff shortages often allowed male employees to be alone with female inmates.
CSC attorneys have argued that the women never filed grievances nor told any CSC or probation department staff members about any sexual misconduct.
"Grievances were always addressed," Rebecca Luna, a former supervisor at the boot camp, testified. "But the residents or trainees wouldn't report violations. We'd hear about them through hearsay and rumors."
One of the plaintiffs, a 33-year-old Arlington woman, testified Friday that she did not report the sexual advances of a CSC maintenance worker because she feared retaliation and had no faith in the grievance process.
"I learned in the first two weeks there that you don't file grievances," said the woman, who admitted that the six-month boot camp helped her end a nearly lifelong addiction to methamphetamine.
The woman said she was forced to simulate sex acts in front of a maintenance worker who watched from a ventilation duct. She said he threatened to plant cigarettes in her locker in exchange for sexual favors.
The employee, Michael Zahn, resigned last year and pleaded guilty in Tarrant County District Court to two charges of official oppression. He was sentenced to two years' probation.
Harris cited Zahn's conviction and three other criminal cases of sexual misconduct as proof of a "disgusting" history of CSC supervision at the boot camp.
"They not only didn't do what they could have done, those people intentionally don't do what they should do to protect" female inmates, he said.