Gov. Sam Brownback says that a report citing continued sexual abuse of women inmates at the Topeka Correctional Facility is out of date and that reforms already have been put in place. Let’s hope so. The U.S. Justice Department released a letter last week reporting that misconduct and abuse are “rampant throughout the facility.” Though these problems have been known for several years, the Kansas Department of Corrections and the prison “still have failed to adequately address the deficiencies,” the letter said, and the inmates “universally fear for their own safety.” Brownback said the report was based on a 2011 investigation and that a federal audit of the facility this year found no deficiencies. He, state lawmakers and federal officials need to make sure that really is the case.
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