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Arizona Dept. of Corrections
It was 1875, in a small dusty, humid town in the southwestern corner of Arizona, when construction began on the state's first correctional facility. Many months later, on July 1st, 1876, seven men were led into the Yuma Territorial Prison to become the first official inmates of what is now the Arizona Department of Corrections. The Yuma prison, until it closed its doors in 1909, occupied a singular place in Am eric an history. Few would have realized, however, that it was the forerunner of one of the most efficient, effective, modern and sophisticated correctional systems in the country.
Today, the Arizona Department of Corrections houses more than 31,000 inmates, 90% of whom are male. The Department does this with approximately 6,000 correctional officers and other full time staff. It is a wonder of high tech organization and reaches every corner of the state. Correctional facilities exist now in ten different locations: Phoenix, Tucson, Florence, Eyman (just east of Florence), Lewis (near Buckeye), Douglas, Safford, Perryville (just west of Phoenix), Winslow, and yes, once again, Yuma.