Corman Applauds Decisive Action to Protect State Corrections Employees

(BELLEFONTE) – Following multiple instances of staff illness from an unknown substance, Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman (R-34) praised today’s action by the state Department of Corrections to lockdown all of the state correctional institutions until the source of the illnesses can be determined.

“Hundreds of our friends and neighbors work in the state prison system locally. It is a priority that everything possible is done to protect their safety and well-being,” Senator Corman said. “Taking this decisive action will help to shield others from further illness including our first responders who answer the calls for help to the facilities.”

The 34th Senate District is home to four State Correctional Institutes (SCI) – Benner Township, Huntingdon, Rockview and Smithfield. Employees at SCI Benner Township, SCI Rockview and SCI Smithfield have been affected by the illnesses.

Senator Corman has been in contact with the Department of Corrections and Secretary John Wetzel to ensure proper measures are put in place to mitigate any further occurrences. All State Correctional Institutions are currently on lockdown until further notice and other security and safety measures have been implemented, according to the Department.

“These unexplained illnesses add to the danger that already exists for those working in a prison setting,” Corman said. “It’s imperative to take action to provide protections such as this for those working to provide for their families.”

CONTACT: Jenn Kocher (717) 787-1377 or