FORGOTTEN MAJORITY INMATE VOICE FOCUS GROUPS
Forgotten Majority has formed several Inmate Voice Focus Groups, (I V = lifeline) comprised of family, friends and advocates of inmates who are taking an active role in making Florida’s prisons a place where inmates are treated humanely. We are working toward establishing a Focus Group in every county in Florida by January 2013. Data gathered by these groups will identify the ‘hot beds’ where serious violations occur frequently and inmates are fearful of retaliation if they dare report it. However, I V Groups will make the report in their stead once information is organized and specifics of the violations identified. Recording and plotting the data received will identify institutions and officers where ill treatment is the norm. The Florida Department of Corrections wants to hear the voice of the inmate and is striving to partner within the local communities. The I V Focus Groups will be the conduit that accomplishes both of these objectives and, in addition, will promote safety and well being for inmates and staff. It’s time to commend those institutions where abuses are not tolerated and weed out the few bad apples that promote pain and suffering for everyone.
THE FOCUS GROUPS WILL:
1. Consist of 5-6 members who relate to the inmate as family, friend, advocate or peer.
2. Meet monthly, except for emergency meetings, in their respective counties as representatives of that county’s prison population.
3. Set their own ground rules, meeting dates, times and location.
4. Identify what is going right at the respective institution and identify areas for improvement.
5. Provide Damage Control intervention when informed of impending harm to inmate or staff.
6. Maintain a record of each complaint and compliment to include name of institution, warden, assistant wardens, officers and inmates (names of inmates will be kept confidential).
7. Appoint one group member to serve as Point-of-Contact to the warden of the respective institution who is not directly related to any inmate or staff.
8. Surrender information to the courts as required.
9. Serve as a United Front on behalf of fair and humane treatment of all inmates, and as a voice in legislative decisions that impact those who are incarcerated.
10. Submit monthly Meeting Minutes to Forgotten Majority.
Guidelines are subject to modification as deemed necessary.
The I.V. Focus Groups will commence January 2013. Contact Forgotten Majority at (904) 568-8231 or P.O. Box 57192, Jacksonville, FL 32241 or send an email to ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ and play a key role in elevating Florida’s prisons to a level where fair and just treatment is the new norm.