There’s been a lot of talk recently about the Department of Corrections’ decision to phase out the word “offender” and replace it with words like “individual,” “patient,” or “student” in reference to the men and women serving time in our state’s prisons.

Some DOC members say they aren’t bothered by the change in terminology, while many others are deeply offended by the DOC’s focus on the issue.

Our representatives in Olympia are paying attention as well. A group of five senators sent a letter to DOC Secretary Dick Morgan earlier this month expressing their concern over the Department’s decision.

They say the decision could pose “a public safety risk” by creating confusion among DOC personnel. They also question whether the Department had the independent authority to make the change in the first place.

Clearly, this is a hot button issue for many of us. Whatever your opinion on the issue, this is another reason it is so important that we turn out for our Legislative Reception and Lobby Day event on February 13-14.

The event gives us an opportunity to speak face-to-face with legislators about issues like staff safety and making sure that we get our contract funded. 

The relationships we establish with our representatives at Lobby Day will help us now and whenever future policy issues arise that impact our lives. You can register for Lobby Day here.