Q.

What constitutes “sufficient time and authority” for the purpose of meeting this requirement with regard to both PREA Coordinators and PREA Compliance Managers pursuant to standard 115.11?

A.

Correctional work is complex, and the nature of the correctional environment includes an element of unpredictability. Furthermore, “sufficient time” may vary considerably from agency to agency, based on a variety of factors, such as the size of the facility and the agency, and the nature of the population housed. Therefore, a minimum number of hours cannot be set which meets the needs of every agency and facility.

Instead, PREA Coordinators and PREA Compliance Managers must have some amount of time allotted specifically for the completion of their PREA responsibilities, even if this involves the formal transfer of non-PREA duties to other staff. Additionally, the opportunity must be available to have requests for additional PREA-related time considered by the agency’s most senior leader or chief executive officer (in the case of agency-level PREA Coordinators) or the facility’s most senior leader or chief executive officer (in the case of facility-level PREA Compliance Managers). For PREA Coordinators, PREA responsibilities required by the standards include developing, implementing, and overseeing agency efforts to comply with the PREA standards in all of its facilities. See standard 115.11(b). For PREA Compliance Managers, PREA responsibilities required by the standards include coordinating the facility’s efforts to comply with the PREA standards. See standard 115.11(b).

In terms of authority, some differences exist between PREA Coordinators at the agency level and PREA Compliance Managers at the facility level. At the agency level, PREA Coordinators must, at a minimum, have:

  • Direct access to the agency’s most senior leader or chief executive officer (e.g., Director, Secretary, Commissioner, Administrator, etc.); 
  • Direct access to the agency’s executive or senior leadership team; and 
  • The influence necessary to create and implement agency-wide policies, procedures, and practices, without any interference from other levels of bureaucracy or supervision, and in accordance with the PREA standards and interpretative guidance issued by DOJ.

To maximize the effectiveness and influence of agency-level PREA Coordinators, some agencies have made PREA Coordinators deputies to the agency’s most senior leader or chief executive officer, and members of the agency’s executive or senior leadership team.

In regards to sufficient authority for PREA Compliance Managers at the facility level, these individuals must, at a minimum, have:

  • Direct access to the facility’s most senior leader or chief executive officer (e.g., Director, Warden, Superintendent, etc.); 
  • Direct access to the facility’s executive or senior leadership team; 
  • Direct access to the agency’s PREA Coordinator; 
  • Comprehensive knowledge of the overall operations of the facility, and the various departments/divisions within the facility; 
  • Full access to all relevant information related to the facility’s compliance with the PREA standards (e.g., PREA policies and procedures, data collected regarding the incidence and prevalence of sexual abuse and sexual harassment in the facility, sexual abuse and sexual harassment investigative files, relevant portions of training and personnel files, etc.); and 
  • The influence necessary to lead, coordinate, guide, and monitor successful ongoing implementation of policies and procedures that comply with the PREA standards across all departments/divisions within the facility, with support from other levels of facility bureaucracy or supervision, and in accordance with the PREA standards and interpretative guidance issued by DOJ.

To maximize the effectiveness and influence of facility-level PREA Compliance Managers, some adult facilities have designated Assistant Wardens (or their equivalents) as their PREA Compliance Managers, or designed a full-time PREA Compliance Manager position at the Assistant Warden (or equivalent) level. Similarly, some juvenile confinement facilities have designated Assistant Directors or Assistant Administrators (or their equivalents) as their PREA Compliance Managers, or designated a full-time PREA Compliance Manager position at the Assistant Director or Assistant Administrator (or equivalent) level.

Standard
Categories
Compliance,
Definitions