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Corrections Secretary Julie Jones Talks Upcoming Legislative Session Priorities

Sascha Cordner

The head of the Florida’s prison system says she already looking ahead to the next legislative session.

Florida Department of Corrections Secretary Julie Jones says she’s happy her alternative sentencing bill passed, during this past legislative session. She calls it an “important move” to reducing technical violations for those on probation coming back to prison. Now, Jones says she has some other priorities on her radar.

“And, one of the Department’s priorities next session will be vocational and educational programming for inmates,” she said. “So, an inmate that does come to the prison system, we intend—in the next two years—to make sure they’re properly evaluated and then have a program planned for the day that they come into the system. So, we’re doing a much better job in trying to change the criminogenic thinking and giving them the tools to succeed in community, as opposed to what we’re doing really good right now, which is just warehousing them.”

Jones adds she’s also looking forward to some sentencing reform initiatives by St. Petersburg Republican Senator Jeff Brandes. That may include looking into the age and health of prisoners, how long they stay in the system, and electronic monitoring.

For more news updates, follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter: @SaschaCordner.

Sascha Cordner has more than ten years of public radio experience. It includes working at NPR member station WUFT-FM in Gainesville for several years. She's worked in both radio and TV, serving in various capacities as a reporter, producer and anchor. She's also a graduate of the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in telecommunications. She is the recipient of 15 awards from the Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), and Edward R. Murrow. Her award-winning stories include her coverage on the infamous “Dozier School for Boys” and a feature titled "Male Breast Cancer: Lost in the Sea of Pink." Currently, Sascha serves as the host and producer of local and state news content for the afternoon news program "All Things Considered" at WFSU. Sascha primarily covers criminal justice and social services issues. When she's not reporting, Sascha likes catching up on her favorite TV shows, singing and reading. Follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter:@SaschaCordner.