Audit Highlights Security Failures in Orange County Correctional Facilities
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Audit Highlights Security Failures in Orange County Correctional Facilities

In a 44-page audit, the Orange County Comptroller’s Office identified security lapses at the county’s detention and correctional facilities.

Although no particular incident or complaint sparked their audit, Orange County Comptroller Phil Diamond is happy that these concerns have been found.

“Were the guards that were hired, are they meeting the standards that the company and county have agreed on? And we found that, in a lot of cases, no, they weren’t,” he stated.

About fifty guards were provided by Allied Universal Security for the juvenile detention facility and the county correctional complex. According to Diamond, the three-year deal paid more than $5.5 million.

“People weren’t being tested,” he stated. “They weren’t getting psychological testing, physical testing. Backgrounds weren’t checked the way they should’ve been checked. We also found that a lot of the continuing training wasn’t happening.”

According to Diamond, there were problems specifically with the juvenile incarceration facility.

The Orange County Corrections Department was advised by the comptroller’s office to adhere to hiring and training protocols, make sure Allied meets staffing requirements, enhance contract monitoring compliance, and make sure contract requirements are in line with existing procedures.

“So there are a number of issues and it’s important to us that the issues get addressed, get fixed. That’s why we do these audits,” Diamond stated.

The most recent contract with Allied expires in October, at which point the comptroller’s office said it will go back up for bids. The office will carry out a follow-up audit in a year or two to make sure the security staff adhered to all the necessary procedures.

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Responses from the Corrections Department and Allied were included in the study, indicating that they agreed and acknowledged the issues at hand as well as suggested solutions. The goal, according to the comptroller’s office, was to deal with problems before they became an issue at the detention facilities.

Orlando Rolon, a former chief of police in Orlando, predicted that Allied would straighten up.

“Allied is a big entity that provides these services, so rest assured they’re not going to want to lose this contract, but most importantly, rest assured that they’re not going to want any liability for a lack of – or lapse in – security.”

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With more than two years of expertise in news and analysis, Eileen Stewart is a seasoned reporter. Eileen is a respected voice in this field, well-known for her sharp reporting and insightful analysis. Her writing covers a wide range of subjects, from politics to culture and more.