New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision

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New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision
Abbreviation NYS DOCCS
NY - State Correctional Services.png
Patch of the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision
NYSDOCS Seal.png
Logo of the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision
Agency overview
Preceding agency New York State Board of Prisons
Employees 31,300
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdiction* State of New York, United States
General nature
Operational structure
Headquarters Main Office Building 2 W. Averell Harriman State Office Building Campus 1220 Washington Ave. Albany, New York
Training Academy 1134 New Scotland Avenue, Albany, New York
Sworn members 23,000
Elected officer responsible Anthony J. Annucci, Commissioner
Prisons 60
Website Official website
* Divisional agency: Division of the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.

The New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (NYSDOCCS) is the department of the New York state government responsible for the care, confinement, and rehabilitation of inmates.

It is responsible for the care, confinement, and rehabilitation of approximately 54,700 inmates at 54 correctional facilities funded by the State of New York,[1] and currently supervises 36,500 parolees at seven regional offices.[2] The department employs a staff of approximately 31,300 individuals, including approximately 23,000 uniformed correction officers, and is currently the 12th largest state prison system in the United States.[3] Its regulations are compiled in title 7 of the New York Codes, Rules and Regulations. The headquarters is located in Building 2 of the W. Averell Harriman State Office Building Campus in Albany.[4]

In response to falling crime rates and prison populations in New York State, the Department has closed a number of facilities between 2009 and 2014.[5] In 2011, the New York State Department of Correctional Services and the Division of Parole merged to form the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision.[6]



The mission of NYSDOCS is to provide for public protection by administering a network of correctional facilities that:

  • Retain inmates in safe custody until released by law;
  • Offer inmates an opportunity to improve their employment potential and their ability to function in a non-criminal fashion;
  • Offer staff a variety of opportunities for career enrichment and advancement; and,
  • Offer stable and humane "community" environments in which all participants, staff and inmates, can perform their required tasks with a sense of satisfaction.


The New York State prison system had its beginnings in 1797 with a single prison called Newgate located in New York City. A second state prison opened 20 years later in Auburn in 1817, and in 1825 a group of Auburn prisoners made the voyage across the Erie Canal and down the Hudson River to begin building Sing Sing.


List of New York state prisons (including those closed). A list with addresses, phone numbers, and other details is found at

Characteristics of New York State prisons[edit]

In part as a response to the Attica Prison riot of 1971, a number of measures were taken to avoid future confrontations and reduce tensions. All New York State correctional facilities have monthly meetings between elected prisoner representatives and the prison administration, at which prisoners may present their concerns. A grievance process was instituted, by which prisoners may grieve any employee whom they feel is acting in violation of regulations. Packages may be received year-round.

At some medium-security prisons, facilities for conjugal visits are available for carefully selected inmates, including same-sex married couples. New York State is one of only four states with conjugal visits in 2014.

New York State does not have any privately-run prisons, and it runs its own health service to treat prisoners.

New York State has also been the national leader in reducing prison population and closing prisons. The reduction is both due to lower crime rates and to diversion of offenders into alternative programs.

Training of Correction Officers[edit]

Newly appointed Correction Officer Trainees will be required to participate in, and satisfactorily complete, all requirements of a 12-month training program before they can advance to Correction Officer. As part of the program, recruits will attend the Correctional Services Training Academy for a minimum of eight weeks of formal training. Paid training at the Academy will include academic courses in such areas as emergency response procedures, interpersonal communications, firearms, unarmed defensive tactics, legal rights and responsibilities, security procedures, and concepts and issues in corrections. Recruits will also receive rigorous physical training to develop fitness, strength and stamina. To physically qualify, it is necessary to perform seven sequential job related tasks in two minutes and fifteen seconds or less. Failure in any of the tasks will result in the recruit failing to meet the agency qualification standards and, accordingly, being dismissed from the Academy. The test is administered during the final week of the training program at the Academy. A thorough explanation and demonstration of the course, and an opportunity for a trial run, will precede the final test.[9]

Legal power and authority of Correction Officers[edit]

New York State Correction Officers have Peace Officer status under section 2.10 of the New York State Criminal Procedure Law.[10] This authorizes them:

  • The power to make warrantless arrests pursuant to section 140.25 of The NY Criminal Procedure Law.
  • The power to use physical force and deadly physical force in making an arrest or preventing an escape pursuant to section 35.30 of the penal law.
  • The power to carry out warrantless searches whenever such searches are constitutionally permissible and acting pursuant to their special duties.
  • The power to possess and take custody of firearms not owned by the peace officer, for the purpose of disposing, guarding, or any other lawful purpose, consistent with his duties as a peace officer.

New York State Correction Officers have peace officer status ON and OFF duty.

Death row[edit]

Prior to the 2007 repeal of the death penalty, the male death row was at the Clinton Correctional Facility and the female death row was at the Bedford Hills Correctional Facility.[11]

The last location for the execution chamber was in Green Haven Correctional Facility.[12] The death chamber at Green Haven had never hosted an execution.[13] Previously inmates were executed at the Sing Sing Correctional Facility.[14]

Fallen officers[edit]

Since the inception of the New York State Department of Correctional Services, 32 officers have died in the line of duty.[15]

See also[edit]


  1. ^, retrieved 2014-08-14
  2. ^
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ "Contact Information." New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision. Retrieved on January 9, 2012. "Building 2 1220 Washington Ave Albany, New York 12226-2050"
  5. ^,,, retrieved 2014-10-08
  6. ^ Merger of Department of Correctional Services and Division of Parole,, retrieved 2014-08-18
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Dr. Kieb Is Dead. Long A State Aide, Former Correction Chief, 74, Was the Superintendent at Matteawan for 27 Years Appointed by Smith Favored Long Prison Terms". New York Times. March 13, 1956. Retrieved 2014-09-01. Dr. Raymond Francis Charles Kieb, former State Correction Commissioner and an international authority on criminal insanity, died yesterday in Vassar Hospital. He was 74 years old. Dr. Kieb retired in 1942 ... 
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Repeal of Death Sentence Regulations (Section 103.45 of 7 NYCRR)." New York State Department of Correctional Services. Retrieved on September 2, 2010.
  12. ^ "Inmate 99-B-0067." New York State Department of Correctional Services. Saturday January 16, 1999. Retrieved on September 2, 2010."The UCP at Clinton has been physically operable for use since August 31, 1995, the day before the death penalty law took effect, as has a similar three-cell UCP for females at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility in Westchester County plus the single-cell death house at Green Haven Correctional Facility in Stormville in Dutchess County. Neither of the two latter units will be staffed until there are inmates on them."
  13. ^ Scott, Brendan. "GOV PULLS SWITCH ON DEATH CELL." New York Daily News. July 24, 2008. Retrieved on September 2, 2010.
  14. ^ "Department Receives First Death Penalty Inmate." New York State Department of Correctional Services. July 22, 1998. Retrieved on September 2, 2010.
  15. ^ The Officer Down Memorial Page

External links[edit]