Corrections Today . . . and Tomorrow: A Compilation of Corrections-Related Articles

Source: U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, National Institute of Justice, NCJ 221166, June 2008

From the abstract:
This publication from the United States Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, contains 11 brief articles which highlight contemporary issues and programs of interest to corrections professionals. A topic concerning prison sexual violence is addressed by “NIJ’s Response to the Rape Elimination Act.” Several articles regarding tools and technology in corrections include: “Brief Mental Health Screening for Corrections Intake”; “Helping Probation and Parole Officers Cope with Stress”; “Duress Systems in Correctional Facilities” and “No More Cell Phones.” Inmate benefits are discussed in “Helping Inmates Obtain Federal Medical Benefits Post-release” and “Obtaining Federal Benefits for Disabled Offenders,” which discusses Social Security and Medicaid benefits along with challenges and lessons learned. Other programs addressing various issues are covered by articles titled: “Faith-Based Programs Give Facilities a Helping Hand”; “Correlating Incarcerated Mothers, Foster Care and Child Reunification”; “Factories Behind Fences: Do Prison ‘Real Work’ Programs Work?” and “Habilitation or Harm: Project Greenlight and the Potential Consequences of Correctional Programming.”

Vision Care: Focusing on the Workplace Benefit

Source: Vision Council, Fall 2008

The Vision Council has compiled Vision Care: Focusing on the Workplace Benefit to explore the value of vision benefits for both employees and employers. Healthy vision for employees means better quality of life while for employers it can mean a healthier workforce, higher productivity and fewer absences. Offering vision coverage can be an additional way to attract quality employees.

2008 Library Salary & Job Survey

Source: Stephanie Maatta, Library Journal, 2008

The latest annual LJ annual Placements & Salaries Survey is out, with news on how the class of 2007 fared in the library and information marketplace. Overall, graduates drew starting salaries 3.1% higher this year than last, hitting an average of $42,361. Strong growth in some areas contrasts with new challenges: more temp positions, a longer job search, and a reinforced gender gap.

For the first time, the survey takes a hard look at the so-called information schools as opposed to the traditional library schools. And there’s much more, with individual sections on minorities, the library gender gap, job searching and where the jobs are, the changing academic library job environment, catalogers and archivists, public vs. private sector jobs, and on and on.

Indoor Mold: Better Coordination of Research on Health Effects and More Consistent Guidance Would Improve Federal Efforts

Source: Government Accountability Office, GAO-08-980, September 30, 2008

Recent research suggests that indoor mold poses a widespread and, for some people, serious health threat. Federal agencies engage in a number of activities to address this issue, including conducting or sponsoring research. For example, in 2004 the National Academies’ Institute of Medicine issued a report requested by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) summarizing the scientific literature on mold, dampness, and human health.

Current and Potential Green Jobs in the U.S. Economy

Source: U.S. Conference of Mayors, October 2008

From the press release:
According to a groundbreaking study establishing a national Green Jobs Index, the U.S. economy currently generates more than 750,000 green jobs a number that is projected to grow five-fold to more than 4.2 million jobs over the next three decades. The report, released today by The U.S. Conference of Mayors, Mayors Climate Protection Center, is the first calculation of its kind to measure how many direct and indirect jobs are in the new and emerging U.S. green economy.
See also:
Key findings

Green-Collar Jobs, Industrial Policy, And A Society With A Future

Source: Bernard Marszalek, New Labor Forum, Vol. 17 no. 3, Fall 2008
(subscription required)

Green-collar jobs have gone mainstream. The popular reception of this program is a remarkable achievement for what began only a few years ago as an underreported campaign uniting a few progressive labor leaders and some politically astute environmentalists.

Despite its popular appeal, or maybe due to it, green-collar jobs lack clear definition. The term arose from a groundbreaking alliance between labor and environmentalists to create a massive national effort to jumpstart an alternative energy program. They modeled it after John Kennedy’s well-funded Apollo Project to get an American on the moon, fast.

Beyond The Mutual Backscratch: A New Model For Labor-Community Coalitions

Source: Amy Dean and Wade Rathke, New Labor Forum, Vol. 17 no. 3, Fall 2008
(subscription required)

Labor historian David Montgomery once compared the George Meany Era of the AFL-CIO to a great snapping turtle, “hiding within its shell to shield the working-class from contamination” and “snapping out” at those forces who venture too close. But, when he became the AFL-CIO president in 1995, John Sweeney announced that supporting “local coalition-building efforts with community, religious, civil rights and other organizations” would become part of labor’s organizing strategy. Today, collaboration with community groups is the official policy of the AFL-CIO, Change to Win, and many individual unions.

Now, however, some trade unionists are questioning this commitment, asking whether the benefits are worth the costs. What does labor get in return for the money and effort it puts into cultivating community allies?

Foreclosing On The Free Market: How To Remedy The Subprime Catastrophe

Source: John Atlas, Peter Dreier, Gregory D. Squires, New Labor Forum, Vol. 17 no. 3, Fall 2008
(subscription required)

Business leaders, activist groups, and politicians are calling for our government to do something before the situation worsens. The Bush administration proposed a bail-out for big Wall Street firms, but as of this writing (May 2008) has done little for homeowners except asking banks to voluntarily restructure troubled loans. The subprime crisis has been a hot-button issue during the 2008 presidential campaign. The Republican candidates were conspicuously silent, while the Democrats offered reasonable ideas for coping with the symptoms (especially regarding homeowners facing foreclosure), but no major candidate proposed the sweeping reforms needed to address the root causes–four pillars of which are outlined below.

A Legislative Agenda For The First 100 Days

Source: Bill Fletcher Jr., New Labor Forum, Vol. 17 no. 3, Fall 2008
(subscription required)

This agenda will be moot without a strong backing from social forces that are prepared to press for its implementation. Any demobilization of those who successfully brought the Democratic candidate to victory will buoy the political Rights leverage to assert its own agenda. Right-wing forces will push for a continuation of the Bush administrations anti-progressive policies. Thus, if we are not prepared to consistently place enough pressure on our “friend” in the White House, we should expect a repeat of the Bill Clinton years–an era in which there was (technically) a high degree of access to the President and top cabinet officials, but the progressive social movements were afforded very little actual power.

Large Declines In Employer-Sponsored Health Coverage Continue

Source: Elise Gould, Economic Policy Institute, Economic Snapshot, October 9, 2008

The health coverage most Americans receive is becoming harder to find. Since 2000, workers and their families have become uninsured at alarming rates: there were over 4 million more uninsured workers in 2007 than in 2000. A new EPI Briefing Paper by Elise Gould finds that employer-sponsored health insurance coverage has declined for the seventh year in a row. Between 2006 and 2007, public insurance was the only reason that more Americans did not become uninsured as coverage fell through work. This week’s Snapshot is illustrated by an interactive map that shows the loss in employer-sponsored health insurance coverage in all states and the District of Columbia within the under-65 population, workers, and children from 2000 to 2007.