County_Prison_019.jpg

The Lancaster County Prison is pictured in this file photo from July 2016.

The Lancaster County Prison is being recognized for its PrisonStat Program for the second time this year.

The National Associations of Counties is awarding their 2018 Achievement in Criminal Justice and Public Safety to Lancaster County for the PrisonStat program.

PrisonStat, started in 2016, takes metrics on the prison's performance and has county leaders, prison officials and the public discuss them in an open setting. The goal is for administration and the public to be able to review the prison's performance together and candidly discuss successes, issues and how to move forward.

"I think in a lot of ways it just recognizes the change that has come about," County Commissioner Josh Parsons said, specifically pointing to the drastic reduction in suicides over the last two years. "It reflects on (the staff's) hard work that they put into changing the organization."

He thinks the public engagement helps build trust, and it gives citizens the opportunity to hold officials accountable if the metrics aren't showing improvement.

NACo notified the county on May 4 that they had won the award, and will present it at their annual conference in July, Parsons said.

PrisonStat meetings are held in room 701 of the county government building at 150 N. Queen St. They are held every other month, but not consistently on the same date.

Dates can be found on the agendas for Prison Board and on the county's social media accounts.