Kent inmate threatening violence before attack on officer: UCCO

Union blaming "inattentive" prison managers for security failures that led to inmate attack on a female officer Saturday.

Kent prison staff are lashing out at prison management after a female corrections officer was slashed across the face Saturday and will probably need plastic surgery.

The Union of Canadian Correctional Officers posted a newsletter Monday claiming the inmate who slashed the officer had made direct threats against another officer 17 days earlier, and was in segregation at the time he promised to stab an officer in the face.

“But what was management’s response to those threats? Release to the General Population where he was able to carry out his plan against the unsuspecting staff member,” the union newsletter charged.

“We will not be victims of management and security intelligence failures to adequately deal with threats, intimidation and violence perpetrated by the inmates,” the union newsletter continued.

“We deserve respect and to be more than faceless numbers to what it seems is an inattentive local management.”

A Kent spokesman did not return a call from The Progress for comment after issuing a news release Monday reporting the 2 p.m. assault.

UCCO president Gord Robertson was also unavailable for an interview, but told The Progress in a voicemail late Monday that the officer is recovering “remarkably well” although she will probably need plastic surgery.

The union claims its members have been warning of problems and submitting detailed reports of threats to management “seemingly without any response or sanction against the inmates.”

The prison news release said prison officials continue to “review the circumstances surrounding the incident and take action where necessary.”

The Saturday attacked reportedly follows an earlier attack on Thursday in which a male officer was stabbed in the chest, but he was wearing a protective vest that saved him from serious injury.