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Scathing report faults jail

The Northern Oregon Regional Corrections Facilities, above, has both adult and juvenille detention areas.

Chronicle photo/file
The Northern Oregon Regional Corrections Facilities, above, has both adult and juvenille detention areas.

County responds to report

The Wasco County Commission has demanded an independent investigation of the juvenile detention facility to address findings in a report that claimed youth there were subjected to punitive treatment.

In a letter to the Northern Oregon Regional Corrections Facility board, the county said it would “immediately redirect” any youth in the regional jail’s custody to a different facility pending resolution of the findings and recommendations in the report.

The commission cited “serious concerns relating to the findings contained” in the Disability Rights Oregon report (see related story).

The county commission also said it would “immediately transfer the operational control and administration of the NORCOR Juvenile Detention Facility to the Juvenile Directors Oversight Committee” pursuant to state law.

It also urged the NORCOR board to immediately convene an emergency meeting to discuss the report.

“It is our hope that the findings contained in the DRO report can be immediately addressed and resolved,” the letter stated. “As a partner agency in NORCOR we will do everything in our purview to help ensure the success of this facility.”

The commission said it hoped its actions will “serve as the catalyst to start a meaningful discussion concerning NORCOR” and said the county remains ready to assist in resolving the issues.

A sharply critical report on the juvenile detention facility at the regional jail claimed youth weren’t allowed to “look around” or ask what time it was, and they spent hours a day isolated in their cells...

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