Guam – Dilapidated office buildings and outdated locking systems plague the island’s Department of Youth Affairs (DYA), according to Director Melanie Brennan on Newstalk K57’s Mornings with Patti.
Brennan said when she visited the facility on Jan. 22, she noticed that the ceiling in one of the buildings was partially caving in. This part was covered in plastic to prevent the termite drippings from dropping onto the desks of some of the employees.
Brennan said an inspection made by the Department of Public Works did not deem the dilapidated buildings condemnable.
DYA is currently awaiting the Department of the Interior’s approval of the previous administration’s request for capital improvement grant, which Brennan said would provide funding necessary to address the issues present in the facilities.
Brennan also said the facilities’ antiquated locking mechanisms for cells within the compound force officers to use of padlocks to secure the buildings.
In accordance with the Juvenal Justice Reform sweeping the nation, the prison model for youth facilities such as DYA will end. Instead of a youth correctional and detainment-type setting, residential-type settings more suitable for youth clients will be implemented.