Downeast Correctional Facility employees’ last day is June 10

ELLSWORTH — Department of Corrections Commissioner Dr. Joseph Fitzpatrick confirmed Friday that the department has officially notified employees and staff at the Downeast Correctional Facility in Machiasport and the Long Creek Youth Development Center in South Portland that their last date of employment is June 10.

The Department of Corrections issued the notices in accordance with obligations in the employees’ collective bargaining agreement.

“Funding to operate Downeast Correctional Facility will no longer be available as of June 10; therefore, the facility will be closing at that time,” Fitzpatrick said. “If the security staff is interested in relocating, the department is willing to work with them to stay employed with the department.

“We are now working with the Maine Department of Labor to accommodate a Rapid Response team at the Machiasport facility as we speak.”

The closure is not a threat to public safety. Downeast Correctional Facility, an outdated facility that is expensive to operate and has been considered for closure for years, now houses 100 minimum-security and community-custody inmates.

Fitzpatrick stated the department will move these inmates to other correctional facilities by June 10.