Staffing shortages are endangering youth and staff at a residential center for high-risk young offenders in Sabillasville, MD, according to AFSCME Maryland Council 3. The staff shortage creates a strain on employees who are often forced to work overtime at facilities such as the Victor Cullen Center in Sabillasville, said Terra Smith, a resident adviser at the center and Council 3 member. “Right now, we don’t have enough staff to make sure that we can provide the highest level of safety for the youth or ourselves at Victor Cullen,” Smith said. The issue came to a head March 11 when a fight broke out between two groups of youth, involving about a dozen boys, Smith said. Maryland State Police were called to help bring the facility under control, and six staff members, including two who were working overtime, were assaulted in the fight, said Smith, who rallied outside the center on August 17 with co-workers and union representatives to demand relief from the Department of Juvenile Services. Read more.
- based on a report in the Frederick News Post; photo by Graham Cullen, Frederick News Post