SASKATCHEWAN — The government of Saskatchewan announced plans to do away with its federal foodservice program in its correctional facilities and hire a private company to cook meals for its inmates, which may result in 62 eliminated positions.
Dale McFee, deputy minister of Justice for Corrections and Policing, explained the results of a consultant recommendation to The Prince Albert Daily Herald.
“Obviously it’s been determined that foodservices aren’t a core function of the Ministry, and that consultant has come back to us saying that there’s probably benefit in going forward in the next few weeks … to do a request for proposal, and there are some potential gains or aspects that we can deal with in the consistency of food services, the standardization related to the diet and how services are delivered.”
Bob Bymoen, president of the Saskatchewan Government and General Employees’ Union, which represents the workers affected, warned of the consequences. “Privatizing foodservices in corrections also has the potential to put staff and inmates at risk, if workers from an outside company are not adequately trained and experienced in dealing with potentially violent situations that can and do occur in these settings,” he said.
While the search has only begun to find a foodservice provider, the changes will not take places until later this year.