A group of District corrections officers voted yesterday to conduct a work stoppage tomorrow at the D.C. Jail to dramatize their concerns that recent layoffs and transfers have jeopardized the officer's safety.
The head of the union local that represents the officers said their plan calls for members of the midnight shift to remain at their posts in the jail, while day shift officers stay outside.
Joseph Majewski, president of the local, said this plan would ensure security at the jail.
Majewski said he had scheduled a meeting at 9 a.m. today to discuss the issues with Delbert Jackson, director of the city corrections department.
According to Majewsi, one source of the officers' discontent is the layoff of 31 guards and 45 other corrections workers ordered in July as part of Mayor Barry's plan to deal with the city's budget deficit.
The officers have also been aroused by reported plans to transfer some of them from the jail to the prison at Lorton to satisfy a court order stemming from lawsuits filed by inmates.
In the suit, prisoners at Lorton's maximum security facility contended that they were in danger of being attacked by other inmates because the city failed to provide enough guards.
The court ordered that at least 152 guards be stationed at the maximum security facility, making necessary transfers within the corrections system, city officials law.
In an interview last night, union leader Majewski said the corrections officers believe the transfer, coming at a time when the entire guard force is below strength, "jeopardize [their] lives and security."
Majewski said, the jail guards intend to remain off their jobs until the city agrees to rehire those laid off and to provide what they consider full complements of corrections officers at Lorton.