On November 17, 2023, The Massachusetts Department of Labor rendered a decision stating there is probable cause that the Massachusetts Department of Correction violated the law. According to the Labor Boards decision, “The Commonwealth derivatively has interfered with, restrained, and coerced the members of the units in the exercise of their rights guaranteed under Section 2 of the Law in violation of Section 10(a)(1) of the Law”
NEPBA respects DOC Commissioner Carol Mici. Commissioner Mici worked her way up through the ranks of the DOC and has a developed good working relationship with NEPBA. However, NEPBA is extremely disappointed that the Commissioner allowed the targeting of President Lanpher under her watch.
Equally disappointing is Commissioner Mici allowing Anti-Union administrators to gain a foothold in the department which will enviably obliterate any existing good-will between labor/management and likely lead to labor unrest.
NEPBA Local 200, which is comprised of DOC Captains, was in the process of contentious bargaining sessions with the DOC over the implementation of body worn cameras. These negotiations were spearheaded by Local 200 President Jason Lanpher, who called out management on numerous occasions for bad faith bargaining.
At some point during the Body Camera negotiations, it is NEPBA’s contention that DOC Chief of Staff Shawn Jenkins, and DOC Deputy Commissioner Kelly Correira, conspired to target President Lanpher. It is NEPBA’s further belief that their strategy was to create a fictitious report about sick time abuse, then use the fabrication to interfere with his contractual union release time by restricting the hours Lanpher is available to service members.
During the Parties Labor Board hearing the NEPBA argued that the DOC also used the conjured-up report as justification to hire outside private investigator to conduct secret surveillance on President Lanpher. That surveillance included taking still pictures of Lanpher’s daughters while playing in their yard and at sporting events. The Private investigator also reviewed and copied his wife and daughter’s personal social media accounts.
Two days after the Massachusetts Labor Board issued a complaint against the DOC for Anti-Union activity, the DOC removed Lanpher from his DOC Tactical Commander Position. Lanpher was a member of the tactical team for over 26 years. Lanpher is a highly decorated member of the tactical team who as commander was instrumental in resolving many inmate disorders at both state and county institutions.
DOC Chief of Staff Shawn Jenkins is well known to NEPBA as an Anti-Union Administrator who has a history of targeting NEPBA union officials and causing labor rifts between the union and management. Jenkins’ disdain for unions was on full display while he served as Superintendent/Special Sheriff at the Worcester and Middlesex House of Corrections where he routinely and openly refused to participate in Labor/Management Meetings. NEPBA refuses to sit by idly and allow our union officials, and families, to be targeted by Mr. Jenkins and his cohorts. NEPBA will file all necessary legal action to protect our members.