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July 23, 2010

CONTACT: Peter Van Delft
(617) 961-6682


Sheriff Andrea J. Cabral addresses members of the Fields Corner Main Street Association during their annual meeting.

Recently, Suffolk County Sheriff Andrea J. Cabral provided the guest address at the annual meeting of the Fields Corner Main Street Association, held inside the multi–purpose room at the Dorchester House Multi–Service Center.

Founded in 2000, Fields Corner Main Street (FCMS) works to enhance and promote the historic commercial district of Fields Corner in partnership with local businesses, residents and community groups.

Introduced by FCMS Board President Lee Adelson to thunderous applause, Sheriff Cabral began her presentation by offering meeting participants the recently released “Common Ground: A Progress Report of the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department,” a comprehensive document that spans the time between 2004 and 2010, and focuses on the remarkable work that is being done inside the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department facilities.

Citing her powerful commitment to maintain the transparency and openness that has been a hallmark of her administration, Sheriff Cabral encouraged meeting attendees to inquire about her work as Sheriff of Suffolk County.

“I want this to be as interactive as you want it to be,” said Sheriff Cabral. “One of the reasons that I love coming out to do presentations is because people get to ask me questions. I want you to ask me questions about things that you don’t know. I want you to ask me about things that you don’t like and, if you have any to offer, give me your suggestions.”

Speaking about the great effect that programs and services have on inmates and detainees in her custody Sheriff Cabral stated that, while much of what transpires “behind the walls” is unseen by the general public, its impact is felt each and every day throughout the communities of Suffolk County.

“It is sometimes very difficult for people to focus on what goes on in the Sheriff’s Department because everything that happens, happens inside the walls,” Sheriff Cabral said. “A lot of it isn’t apparent in your everyday life, but what the Sheriff’s Department does, especially given the size of this Sheriff’s Department, has a huge impact on your safety and other aspects of your life every single day.”

Noting the distinction of presiding over the largest Sheriff’s Department in the northeast and the 30th largest in the United States of America, Sheriff Cabral talked about the relationship between the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department and public safety.

“The population that we manage is very substantial,” said Sheriff Cabral. “Of the 2,700 men and women we manage daily as inmates and pre–trial detainees, 95% of them live within 5–miles of the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department. When they get out, they go home. If they live within 5–miles home is Dorchester, Roxbury, West Roxbury, Brighton – all of the neighborhoods of Boston. So if they are going to re–offend, they are going to have an immediate impact on the communities they return to, and that means they are going to have an immediate impact on you.”

“This is why what we do in the Sheriff’s Department with individuals while they are in custody is critical to keeping neighborhoods safe. If I can decrease the likelihood of recidivism in any way shape or form, for however many I can have an impact on, it actually saves you money and I do believe that is a responsibility and an obligation of the Sheriff’s Department. Rehabilitave support is the only way that corrections actually has an opportunity to correct anything. We concentrate very heavily on inmate programming and you can read in the report about all of the programming that we provide.”

Following the address, members of the Fields Corner Main Street community thanked Sheriff Cabral for her time and spoke about her presentation.

“Sheriff Cabral did a great job giving the audience a greater understanding of the process of incarceration and where the money is going to get people out of a life of crime,” said FCMS Board President Adelson.

Echoing Adelson’s sentiment, FCMS Executive Director Evelyn Darling stated that, “Sheriff Cabral captivated the audience at our annual meeting. She dynamically described the role of her department and the resources available to prevent recidivism, a very important issue in our community. And people really appreciated that she stayed longer than expected to answer everyone’s questions.”

To download a PDF copy of the “Common Ground: A Progress Report of the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department” or the accompanying summary, visit the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department website at:

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