Groveland Correctional Facility
Groveland Correctional Facility is a 1,106-bed capacity medium security prison in Western New York.
The Correctional Association’s Prison Visiting Project visited Groveland on June 18 and 19, 2012.
Compared to other prisons the Correctional Association has visited, Groveland had:
- Freedom of movement substantially greater than what we’ve seen in many DOCCS prisons, allowing for more autonomy and positive group interactions among the population.
- A relatively calm atmosphere resulting from the greater autonomy and freedom of movement.
- Relatively positively rated academic and vocational programs.
- Some positive volunteer programs and limited peer-support opportunities that are not often present across the system.
On the other hand, the Correctional Association was significantly concerned to find:
- Very poor ratings of both access to and quality of medical care provided at the facility.
- Poor ratings of mental health services, and the facility’s limited ability to support the large number of people with mental health needs in the general population and solitary confinement.
- Allegations by incarcerated persons of abuse by certain staff members with a lack of accountability, and frequent imposition of solitary confinement.
- A lack of capacity to meet individual programmatic needs, including the lack of a college program even though nearly two-thirds of people incarcerated at Groveland have a GED.
Overall, the greater freedom of movement, autonomy, and level of responsibility given to individuals at Groveland is commendable and particularly important since the facility incarcerates a greater portion of people closer in time to returning home, where they will need to have control over their time, decisions, and lives. On the other hand, the vast disparities at Groveland in the population’s addiction, mental health, and other needs, and the programs and services available highlights the ineffectiveness of incarceration and the missed opportunities for helping people address the underlying causes of problematic behaviors and prepare to return home to their families and communities.
The CA has been monitoring the high rates of suicide and self-harm in the state prisons for more than a decade and has repeatedly drawn attention to excessively high rates of harm at certain prisons and in specific locations, such as solitary confinement and residential mental health units, to the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS), the Office of Mental Health (OMH) and the legislature in the CA’s reports and legislative testimonies. DOCCS suicide rate from 2010-16 was 56% higher than the national average for all US prisons.Read More
If New York state were punishing misbehaving prisoners by pulling out their fingernails, I believe our local senators and assemblymen would put a stop to this. Yet the legislature continues to allow the extended use of solitary confinement in prisons. Make no mistake, this is torture. Don’t take my word for it. Go spend 15 [...]Read More
Reports & Research
“Solitary at Southport: A 2017 Report Based Upon the Correctional Association’s Visits, Data Analysis, & First-Hand Accounts of the Torture of Solitary Confinement from One of New York’s Supermax Prisons”
“The isolation itself is torture. Mentally and emotionally, it breaks you down. Spiritually it strips you. The way it is built is to break you down as a person and push your family away.” From “Solitary at Southport” Solitary confinement is torture. New York State subjects people to solitary confinement and other forms of isolation [...]Read More