VPM Daily Newscast: May 23, 2023
The VPM Daily Newscast contains all your Central Virginia news in just 5 to 10 minutes. Episodes are recorded the night before.
Here’s a recap of the top stories on the morning of May 23, 2023:
Self-described whistleblower fired from Virginia Department of Corrections
Reported by VPM News’ Ben Paviour
The Virginia Department of Corrections fired an officer Thursday who previously criticized leadership at the agency.
Lt. Kelsey Haley said he believes the punishment’s severity differs from an unnamed VADOC warden whom the department found bullied lower-level employees and made racist remarks. among other infractions. That warden was suspended for a week and transferred to a new facility, according to VADOC paperwork.
The differing discipline reinforces the need for an oversight panel focused on the corrections department, according to Shawn Waneta, a policy strategist at the ACLU of Virginia. The department has faced several lawsuits in recent years over its use of solitary confinement and one of its facilities has repeatedly failed to meet the terms of a federal consent decree over poor health care and deaths of incarcerated people.
Navy leaders said they already have taken steps to improve conditions in Newport News. Recommended increases in sailor pay, housing benefits, food, health care, job choices and counseling could affect service members across the board.
In a memo accompanying its report, Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro and Adm. Mike Gilday, chief of naval operations, concluded that "collectively, Navy senior leadership, officer and civilian, let our standards slip — and in doing so we let our people down."
The investigation began last year after seven service members assigned to the aircraft carrier USS George Washington died over a 12-month period ending April 2022, including three in one week.
In other news:
- Virginia’s historic Black watermen communities are endangered (Virginia Mercury)
In case you missed it:
- RPS struggles with student absenteeism still present (Richmond Free Press)
- Former Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe visits front line in Ukraine (The Washington Post)