Strong protections shield New York state's 20,000 corrections officers from penalties, even when there is compelling evidence of abuse, reports the New York Times with the Marshall Project. Since 2010, the state has tried to fire 30 prison guards accused of abusing inmates through a convoluted arbitration process that is required under the union contract. Officials have prevailed only eight times. Records released under state Freedom of Information Law requests show that most abuse allegations never reach the arbitration level. Another 80 cases brought against corrections officers, sergeants and lieutenants since 2010 were settled with their unions for penalties other than dismissal, such as suspension.