August 25, 2023

Duckworth, Durbin, Sorensen Statement On Permanent Conversion Of Thomson Prison To Low-Security Facility

Thomson will retain all current employees


[CHICAGO, IL] Today, U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and U.S. Representative Eric Sorensen (D-IL-17) released the following statement regarding the decision by the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) to permanently convert United States Penitentiary (USP) Thomson into a low-security prison while ensuring that all current Thomson employees will be retained:

“We welcome today’s announcement by BOP Director Peters that USP Thomson will be permanently converted to a low-security facility.  This change is a decisive effort to address the many challenges the institution has faced in recent years, while relieving some of the overpopulation pressures BOP is experiencing in low-security facilities nationwide.

“While we’re disappointed that this conversion will lead to a reduction in the number of full-time staff positions, we’re relieved that the facility will retain all of its current employees and will end the overuse of augmentation and overtime that created a great strain on Thomson’s employees.  It is critical that BOP leadership ensure that the prison stays fully staffed and that BOP prioritizes retention and recruitment efforts to incentivize employees to continue working at the facility. 

“With this mission change and retention of all current employees, Thomson will be better equipped to become a safe and secure facility with a focus on rehabilitation and reentry.”

In March, BOP announced that USP Thomson would be temporarily converted to a low-security prison.