Editor’s Note: Because the language in the Brady-Giglio policy references law enforcement agencies and police officers specifically,those terms have been used throughout this article for consistency. However,it is important to note that the Brady-Giglio policy encompasses those who work in all areas of law enforcement,and as such,is applicable to all corrections staff/officials working in jails and prisons as well.
It was forty years ago this summer that I began working in local corrections in Alabama. At that time,there was an emerging concern about lack of standards,guidelines,policies,etc.,to guide local jail officials. This concern,coupled with an absence of formal training,led to a search for solutions. Prompting that search was the growing amount of litigation against local jails.
It’s been a few years since the United States Supreme Court announced their controversial decision ruling that the U.S. Constitution provides same-sex couples the right to marry1. The court ruled 5-4 that the Constitution’s guarantees of due process and equal protection under the law mean that states cannot ban same-sex marriages. The landmark ruling made gay marriage legal in all 50 states.
In early 2011,I was comfortably ensconced in what I believed would be my retirement home. Sitting on a ridge overlooking the Dunnavant Valley in north Alabama,the house location allowed me to look across the valley and view the changing seasons and the abundant wildlife which frequented the property. All was good.