Monday, May 4, 2020

Detention Deputies Honored: Correctional Officers' Week May 3-10, 2020

Mesa County Board of Commissioners
proclaim this week Correctional Officers' Week
MESA COUNTY, Colo. — Today the Mesa County Board of Commissioners officially dedicated this week to Correctional Officers in Mesa County. In 1984, President Ronald Reagan created National Correctional Officers’ Week to honor the work of correctional officers and correctional personnel nationwide. In Mesa County, this group of professionals are known as detention deputies.

Sheriff Matt Lewis and Detentions Captain Art Smith joined the Mesa County Board of Commissioners in recognizing the professionalism and dedication of our detention deputies and staff especially during these unique times.

Detentions deputies and staff are on the front line and are an integral part of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Local jails, like the Mesa County Detention Facility, are complex organizations. On a basic level, a jail must provide its inmate population a number of services, including three meals a day, medical and mental health care, clothing and linens, visitation, recreation, religious programs, as well as access to courts and attorneys while maintaining the safety and security of the 24-hour facility. Complicating this task is the risk of illness to both inmates and staff from a global pandemic.

“Our detention deputies and staff have been courageously performing this critically important service for our community,” said Capt. Art Smith. “Every day they work with people who’ve been medically isolated or quarantined with the utmost professionalism. Then, they still have families to go home to, and children to help with online learning. Our detentions deputies and staff are handling all of these new challenges admirably.”

Early on, the Mesa County Detention Facility implemented safety measures recommended by public health to protect inmates, staff and volunteers from the spread of COVID-19. To date, the Mesa County Detention Facility has zero positive cases of COVID-19. For more information about operational changes visit our website.

A wreath is on display honoring
Deputy Edward Innes
National Correctional Officers’ Week is also a time to honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for their community. The names of 720 correctional officers are engraved on the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial. One of those names is Deputy Edward Innes, who was killed by an inmate escaping the jail in 1906. A wreath, first displayed in the Mesa County Sheriff's Office lobby, will be placed on Deputy Innes' grave this week to honor and remember his sacrifice. Learn more about Deputy Edward Innes here.

Please join us in thanking all detentions professionals for not only what they do, but more importantly, the personal sacrifices they make to ensure our community remains a safe place to live, work and play.