SCI Mercer Gets New Veterans Unit, Expanded Medical Unit

Building upon SCI Mercer’s past performance as one of the most cost-effective prisons in the state, and as one of the most successful in rehabilitation, state Sen. Michele Brooks is pleased to announce that the facility will add a Veterans Service Unit and increase the number of infirmary beds.

“As with anything, these programs must be effective and fiscally responsible,” said Sen. Brooks.  “I have appreciated the opportunity to work with the Governor’s office and Corrections Secretary Wetzel to bring these units to SCI Mercer, which has a proven history of operating effectively and efficiently.  It has been a collaborative effort to see how we can best help these veterans.”

The Veterans Service Unit will work with incarcerated veterans who are approximately 9 to 18 months from release to help them reenter society and reduce the likelihood of recidivism.

“Knowing how strong our local veterans’ organizations are here in Mercer County and the surrounding areas, I thought it would be beneficial to work toward transferring this unit to SCI Mercer,” Sen. Brooks said.

Sen. Brooks is also working to bring a program to SCI Mercer that would allow inmates to train therapeutic dogs for service members suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

This proposed program would operate independently of the existing Correction Adoptive Rescue/Endeavor Canine Program, which provides training and socialization to enhance the adoptability of dogs in need of a permanent home.

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Contact:          Diane McNaughton                              (717) 787-6725

dmmcnaughton@pasen.gov