Families flood Taft prison after closure announcement

Local News

TAFT, Calif. (KGET) — Tensions continue after last week’s announcement by the Bureau of Prisons that the Taft prison will be closing next year.

This past weekend, many families arrived at the Taft Correctional Institution to see their inmate relatives before the prison closes on Jan. 31 and the inmates are transferred to other facilities. 

Staff members are also concerned about losing their jobs. The prison employs more than 340 people, according to data from the Management & Training Corporation, which runs the prison. 

“This area has an approximate 8 percent-plus unemployment rate, so closing this prison would be devastating for the local economy and many of the staff would be left without means of employment,” said concerned citizen Deborah Patrick. “This would become a major issue for many of the older employees who will find it increasingly difficult to find employment.”

Congressman Kevin McCarthy recently released a statement calling on the federal government to keep the prison open. The Bureau of Prisons has not responded to his statement. 

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