Oklahoma Prison Woes: No Beds For New Inmates, 700 Staff Vacancies


Oklahoma’s corrections department is lacking 700 staff members, more than one fourth of the total authorized, at a time when prison population is increasing, says corrections director Justin Jones, according to the Tulsa World. The corrections department and other state agencies have been cutting budgets in response to declining state revenues; agencies are expecting deeper cuts as lawmakers craft a budget for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1.

With 1,503 inmates in county jails awaiting transport to state facilities, “we have no beds,” said a department official. State correction board member David Henneke called the inmate population “beyond critical.”

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