FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Peter Van Delft
SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT HONOR GUARD PRESENTS COLORS AT MEDAL OF HONOR CEREMONY
On September 17th, 2009, the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department Honor Guard presented the Colors at the American Correctional Officer Medal of Honor ceremony and Fall Training Conference.
The Sheriff’s Department Honor Guard helped to kick off the annual event with a series of sharply executed maneuvers, displaying the flag of the United States of America along with flags representing the POW/MIA’s, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department for the duration of the event.
Sponsored by the American Correctional Officer Intelligence Network (ACOIN), the conference featured a number of workshops and networking events created with the purpose of providing attendees with information and resources to help them become better professionals within the field of corrections.
This year’s primary training was focused on East Coast and West Coast gangs, and the impact they have on the world of corrections. Attention was also paid to the issue of cell phones that are found within juvenile detention centers, jails, and prisons, and the dangers they pose to custody staff, inmates, and detainees. The subject of privatization, along with several pieces of legislation geared toward the corrections profession, were also discussed.
Addressing the other aspect of the occasion – the American Correctional Officer Medal of Honor award, which is given as a means of “distinguishing those officers who have performed selflessly and without regard for danger to themselves in performing their everyday duties” – ACOIN Executive Director Brian Dawe spoke about the need for such recognition within the corrections community.
“A lot of people are unaware of the work that is done and the sacrifice given by officers in corrections,” said Dawe. “We are, for the most part, unseen and so, a lot of what we do is unknown. It’s easy to see some of the other professions because they’re responders. You can see EMT’s coming to an accident or Firemen coming to a fire, Policemen responding to a call.”
“Once a person is apprehended by the police, however, it is the correction officer who has to deal with them,” Dawe continued. “When a crime is committed, often, it’s the one time in which the victim might see the perpetrator before they are caught. But, once they’re incarcerated, it is the correction officer who has to get in with them and live with them day after day. It’s a tough job and one that I don’t think gets enough recognition in the world of law enforcement and throughout the community at large.”
To learn more about the American Correctional Officer Intelligence Network, visit www.cointel.net.