Arizona Department of Corrections
The first unit in the Douglas Complex to be constructed was the Maricopa Unit, which became operational in December 1983 as the Arizona Correctional Training Facility-Douglas. Inmates were moved here to assist the contractor in building the facility. Sixty-three inmates were housed in barracks type structures adjacent to the prison. Currently there are 130 inmates housed at the Maricopa Unit.
The main purpose of this unit was to house inmates who would work with the Department of Administration in the construction of a permanent housing unit now known as the Mohave Unit. Mohave was designed to house 800 level 3 male inmates. Due to prison overcrowding, the population increased to 872. Mohave now houses 927 inmates.
In 1985, a high influx of inmates forced the Department to procure emergency bed space. Trailer-type buildings were purchased and utilized as emergency beds for 600 inmates, which is now known as the Gila Unit. There are 662 inmates at the Gila Unit presently.
In March of 1984, the need for housing inmates convicted of DUI offenses became a problem for the department. Pursuant to ARS statues, inmates convicted of a DUI offense needed to be housed separately from other convicted felons. The Papago Unit was purchased from the Desert Inn Motel Company and converted into a prison unit. It housed 250 inmates. Papago now houses 340 inmates.
Over the next several years, due to the rapid rate of growth of individuals incarcerated in the Arizona Department of Corrections, ASPC-Douglas has grown from a capacity of approximately 900 inmates to the present capacity of 2,148. This amount includes 89 at the Complex Detention Unit.
Support Services has also grown due to the increase of inmates. We presently employ staff members in areas such as Business, Maintenance, Education, Religion, Administrative Support and Health Service. ASPC-Douglas was awarded the prestigious "Large Business of the Year Award" twice, once in 1996 and again in 1999, by the Douglas Chamber of Commerce. This award was for outstanding contributions made by ASPC-Douglas employees over the years. On November 16, 1998, ASPC-Douglas received the "Governors Award for Excellence" for the Inmate Work Crew Program. We currently maintain more than 39 Intergovernmental Agreement contracts throughout Cochise County.
The use of inmate Labor has saved the surrounding communities more than two million dollars in labor costs annually. This monetary savings is substantial; however, it is not as important as the image of the inmates giving back to the community.
Under the leadership of Director Dora B. Schriro, ASPC-Douglas continues to maintain an active membership within the Douglas Community as well as all other communities in which it serves.
The relationship between the Arizona State Prison and Cochise County has existed long before the Douglas Prison Complex was built and sent its first work crew to the City of Douglas.
Not only do the inmates "give back to the community," Arizona Department of Corrections employees also give back to the community. ADOC employees participate in various civic and community activities. These employees unselfishly give of their time, effort and money to provide the needed funds for these non profit organizations thereby contributing to those less fortunate and in need.
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