Lawsuit takes aim at prison closures - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Lawsuit takes aim at prison closures

By JOHN O'CONNOR
AP Political Writer

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - A lawsuit claims Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn's plan to close prisons at Dwight, Tamms and elsewhere and transfer up to 5,000 prisoners will endanger state Corrections Department staff and inmates in other crowded prisons.

The union representing corrections workers filed a lawsuit Thursday in Alexander County - where Tamms is located - to halt inmate movement. The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees wants Quinn to ensure employee safety in what it says are understaffed prisons.

The lawsuit - obtained in advance by The Associated Press - says the Democrat is moving forward despite bipartisan legislative support and sufficient money to keep the prisons open.

An AP count shows 27 Tamms inmates have been moved to other prisons since late March.

A Corrections spokeswoman did not immediately comment.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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