The Florida Department of Corrections is the state institution that is dedicated to housing, maintaining, and policing the criminals and convicts of the state of Florida. As Florida is home to the third-largest prisoner population in the country, having just over 102,000 prison inmates (with an additional 115,000 persons on active community supervision), this is no small matter. In fact, the annual budget of the Florida Department of Corrections is a staggering $2.4 billion.
The Florida Department of Corrections is responsible for the maintenance of as many as 146 different facilities, which includes 62 prisons, forestry and work camps, a treatment center, and several work release centers. In order to adequately meet the needs of Florida’s prisoner population, the Florida Department of Corrections employs more than 27,000 people.
It should be noted that the Florida Department of Corrections does not control all of the prisons and jails in Florida. In the state, private institutions run and manage six different prison facilities, making them independent of state oversight. Further, it should also be noted that the FDC only administers the prisons in Florida – individual counties, and sheriffs within those counties, control the jails. (The main difference between a jail and a prison is the length of stay; jails are for those individuals that are awaiting trial/sentencing, or are serving time for offenses that call for less than a year of incarceration, whereas prisons are utilized for convicted criminals.)
The primary goal of the FDC is to make Florida a better and safer place for law-abiding citizens.
The FDC also provides a suite of resources available to anyone that cares to utilize them in their efforts to understand aspects of the Florida prisoner population. The first of these, the Offender Information Search tool, searches every database employed by the FDC to find information about prison inmates. This includes escapes, inmate population, and other details. You can find this search tool at http://www.dc.state.fl.us/AppCommon/.
You can use the Supervised Population Inmate Search to look up information about criminals that are under the supervision of the FDC. This database, located at http://www.dc.state.fl.us/ActiveOffenders/, includes pictures, names, dates of birth, and details about crimes committed.
If you’re trying to find records and statistics of the prison inmate population of Florida, you can utilize the reports found at the Index to Statistics & Publications page at http://www.dc.state.fl.us/pub/index.html. Here, you can find reports ranging as far back as fiscal year 1996-7 on a wide variety of topics, including annual reports and statistical overviews of the inmate population.
The FDC also provides a web page that is dedicated to re-entry programs for former convicts that will allow them to more easily integrate themselves back into society. Here, you can find information about different services that are offered in different counties. You can find this search tool at http://www.dc.state.fl.us/resourcedirectory/Search.aspx.
If you are interested in the long-term history of the Florida Department of Corrections, then you will be interested to read their page called Florida Corrections: Centuries of Progress. Here, the full history of the department is chronicled, and includes statistical information as well as biographical portraits of some of the most significant persons involved with the department. The timeline can be located at http://www.dc.state.fl.us/oth/timeline/index.html.
Finally, if you would like to contact the Florida Department of Corrections, you can find the email addresses of every FDC official at their contact page, located at http://www.dc.state.fl.us/orginfo/contact.html. Alternatively, you can reach them via telephone at 850-717-3444.