"We're already short-handed": Corrections officer on sequestration impact
Reporter: Alexis Fernandez
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - For more than six-years Gary White has been protecting the Tucson community by keeping the bad guys off our streets.
He says his job as a corrections officer for the federal prison here in Tucson and a union leader is difficult, but it could become even more challenging once the affects of the federal budget cuts lock in.
"We're already short-handed, so we're going to be even more short-handed -- and these inmates, they haven't gotten any nicer over the years," he told 9OYS.
According to Attorney General Eric Holder, the sequestration would cut $338 million from the Federal Bureau of Prisons budget.
Nearly 37,000 staff will be required to take at least 12 days off without pay.
9OYS's Alexis Fernandez asked, how does this impact safety for staff and inmates?
"Having never been through this I can only speculate, I don't think it's going to be a good thing," he responded.
White says this budget cut is dangerous for the 1,000 corrections officers in Arizona that are responsible for guarding 5,000 inmates.
"We're going to have to end up having to take staff members that wouldn't normally be working in the cell blocks to cover those posts," he said.
A new reality, he hopes lawmakers will prevent before it's too late.
"It's been frustrating for years now, I just wish that they could sit down and get along... compromise," he said.