Correction officers launch social media blitz
Norman Seabrook, the president of the union representing correction officers, has begun a social media blitz to detail assaults on officers.
He began publishing the information Monday online and is looking to hire someone full time to publish that information on various social media platforms.
“The bottom line is, do you want shit thrown in your mouth? They’re not just talking shit to us, they’re dousing us with it,” Seabrook told Capital in a brief interview. "We want people to know what we do 24 hours a day, 7 days a week."
On Monday, the Correction Officers Benevolent Association wrote on Facebook “3 CO’s sent to hospital - 15 inmates fighting; sprayed with OC to get them to stop.”
This morning, the union tweeted “9 CO’s sent to hospital 10 inmates fighting; sprayed with OC to stop.” A longer version on Facebook added “2 CO’s and 1 Civilian splashed with possible feces/urine/blood.”
Seabrook's effort comes amid criticism of the city's corrections officers, who have been accused of beating inmates, locking them away in solitary confinement and creating what the United States Attorney in Manhattan called a “culture of violence” on Rikers Island. The New York Times reported that correction officers have attacked inmates with little repercussion, and the City Council recently passed a bill demanding the Department of Correction publish details about their use of solitary confinement against prisoners.
Councilman Daniel Dromm, the sponsor of that bill, accused Seabrook of being "part of the problem."
Seabrook said the Council legislation gave correction officers “a black eye” because it implicitly cast doubt on their behavior. By “asking us for those documents,” Seabrook said it shows Council members “don’t seem to know what we are doing.”