news

  • Jun4
    THE CHIEF-LEADER
    A lawsuit filed by the Legal Aid Society charges that "lawless staff" at Rikers Island "have inflicted brutal beatings on inmates" and that supervisors in the jails and "at the highest levels of the department...have created and now perpetuate a policy of permitting uniformed staff to use unlawful, excessive force with impunity."
  • May15
    Norman Seabrook, Correction Officers Union President
    In an interview at his downtown Manhattan office, Seabrook says Schriro's leadership is responsible for a rise in the number of his members
  • Mar27
    Solitary Confinement On the Rise at Rikers
    Over the last two years, the Department of Correction has nearly doubled the number of "punitive segregation" cells—the Department's term for solitary confinement—at the jail facilities at Rikers Island. The 44 percent jump, DOC Commissioner Dora Schriro testified at a City Council budget hearing this month, constitutes "the most significant increase in the department's history," one that prisoners rights groups say gives New York City one of the highest solitary confinement rates in the nation.
  • Mar21
    COBA CO Shot Program
    The COBA is offering a $5,000 reward leading to the arrest and conviction of the person responsible for the shooting of Correction Officer Karen Raghunanan.
  • Mar20
    In Defense of Seabrook
    A $5,000 reward will be distributed through the COBA's Cop-Shot program which was created by President Seabrook to assist with the timely apprehension and prosecution of individuals who have shot New York City Correction Officers as well as Police Officers. Anyone wishing to participate can call the COBA at 212-274-8000.
  • Jan31
    Manhattan Borough President Stringer Honors Community Trailblazers
    Stringer introduced Norman Seabrook as a recipient for not only for his tireless work as a union leader "but as a man of conscience."
  • Jan30
    NY Pension Reform Air Wars, Chapter II
    One of the latest entries is a radio ad from the New York City Correction Officers Benevolent Association that accuses state and city officials of trying to “eliminate pensions” for public workers.
  • Jan29
    Stringer Recognizes African-American Trailblazers
    Norman Seabrook, the president of New York City Correction Officers’ Benevolent Association, the largest municipal jail union in the country, took Black History Month as an opportunity to remind his audience of both how far minorities have progressed and how much farther they have to go.
  • Jan28
    Stringer delivers a big, progressive speech; rivals and fellow Dems enjoy it, mostly
    The four likely mayoral candidates were at the New-York Historical Society on Central Park West last night for Stringer's State of the Borough speech. The speech hinted at the economic theme of Stringer's mayoral campaign: reducing income inequality and making things easier for the middle class.
  • Jan27
    Stringer Positions Himself as Defender of Middle Class Ahead of Mayoral Run
    Following in the footsteps of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Stringer called for a middle class tax cut that would lower rates for families making less than $300,000 a year and increasing rates for those earning more than $1 million.
  • Jan26
    We Impeached Seabrook, COBA Dissident Claims. In Your Dreams, He Responds
    Correction Officers Benevolent Association dissident Chandra LaSonde contends that President Norman Seabrook has been impeached and that she is now the acting head of the union. Mr. Seabrook and other union officials don't agree. They say that the Jan. 18 meeting at which the impeachment vote was taken was not called properly under union rules, and that a State Supreme Court judge hearing Ms. LaSonde's lawsuit against the union declared that the gathering was not an official COBA meeting.
  • Jan25
    Who Runs The NYC Corrections Officers' Union?
    A Manhattan judge ruled Wednesday that a splinter group must stop pretending to be in charge of the Correction Officers' Benevolent Association. Longtime COBA president Norman Seabrook hailed the decision: "Somebody can say that they are the President of the United States but that doesn’t make it true," he said.
  • Nov29
    Police aren't confident of finding driver who cut off inmate bus on Thruway
    Police investigators likely won’t find the driver who supposedly cut off a prison-bound bus on the New York State Thruway in Rockland County, causing the bus driver to hit a guardrail and overturn with 16 inmates aboard, the state police said Thursday. full story
  • Nov28
    Slain Officer Was Devoted to His Daughters
    Officer Peter J. Figoski worked the midnight shift in one of New York’s most dangerous precincts, apprehending robbers in and around East New York, Brooklyn, with the instincts of a 22-year veteran. Then he would go home to Long Island to drive his daughters to school. His life, balanced so purposefully by two passions, shattered in an instant early Monday morning.
  • Nov28
    COBA Getting Job Done
    In his Letter to the Editor (Nov. 28 issue), declared candidate for the COBA Presidency Celestino Monclova takes issue with a number of actions the Correction Officers’ Benevolent Association has taken to benefit each and every single Correction Officer in this city. While Mr. Monclova has desperately attempted to mislead the membership through a series of false accusations, I’ll take this opportunity to set the record straight. full story
  • Nov23
    Solitary Confinement Units to Increase in NYC
    The city's Department of Correction is significantly increasing the number of its solitary confinement units. Currently, it has 862 so-called "punitive segregation cells." By the end of next month, it will have just under a thousand, according to DOC Commissioner Dora Schriro. full story
  • Nov22
    Waiting for the Bing Union, DOC Clash Over Violence Within City Jails
    Committee chair Elizabeth Crowley, using figures that appeared to have been prepared by the Correction Officers Benevolent Association, asked why the punitive-segregation units, known as The Bing, have a waiting list of 922 prisoners.
  • Nov18
    No rooms at Rikers: Lack of space for solitary confinement leads to recent spike in violence
    In the past four months, 85 officers were rushed to the hospital after inmate assaults. Department officials maintain that many of these cases involved minor injuries. Only 14 were ultimately labeled serious assaults, resulting in broken bones or major wounds, officials testified Nov. 17.
  • Nov17
    City council investigates inmate violence
    Correction Officer James La suffered a vicious punch in the jaw from an inmate on Rikers Island who should have been punished and isolated for a previous incident. Officer Rodney Brown's thumb was bitten off by a jail inmate, and there is video of an inmate assaulting yet another officer with a broomstick in September. Those inmates were all supposed to be separated, not in general population, it's known as owing time in the box. full story
  • Nov17
    COBA President Norman Seabrook’s Testimony Regarding the Department of Correction Budget
    Last year I sat before this committee and provided a detailed overview of the jail violence that continues to escalate throughout the Department, jeopardizing the lives of Correction Officers as well as the inmates. In spite of the warnings issued by the COBA, the Commissioner of the Department, though her misguided management practices, has contributed to the perilous conditions confronting every uniformed member of this Department. full story
  • Nov15
    Occupy Rikers
    On Tuesday November 8th and Wednesday November 9th, the COBA executive board along with delegates and you the COBA member, took a stand against post cuts, against the increase in use of force incidents, against assaults on staff and against abusive disciplinary practices. This is not the end, this is just the beginning. While some may say these actions should have occurred sooner, we say timing is everything! full story
  • Nov10
    COBA Protests DOC’s Post Cuts, Says the Lives of Correction Officers Are at Stake
    How many more civilians will be hired at DOC at $100K plus while we're cut to the bone? The next officer that gets assaulted could be you.
  • Oct14
    Dora Schriro, Correction Commissioner, Blasted By Jail Guard Union
    ​The union representing correction officers today blasted Correction Commissioner Dora Schriro's management of the city's jail system.
  • Oct13
    COBA Continues to Fight the War Against the Middle Class by Lending Support to Wall St. Protesters
    Since January, when COBA led the charge of united public and private sector union members and middle class New Yorkers, through a bold media campaign and a massive rally held at City Hall Park, the union has vigorously fought back against the attack on our wages, pensions, benefits and our quality of life.
  • Sep28
    Despite Arrests, Basketball Star’s Murder Stokes Frustration with Police
    Norman Seabrook, president of the New York City Correction Officers' Benevolent Association, advocated an automatic seven-year sentence for anyone caught with illegal firearms. "It is time for us to change the laws to make these young men accountable," he said at the press conference.
  • Sep27
    Arbitrator Orders More Heat for COs at Court
    "This decision reflects our continued success in fighting to ensure that those who patrol the toughest precincts in New York are not treated like animals by the Department of Correction," COBA President Norman Seabrook said in a statement. "Under my direction, COBA Sergeant-At-Arms Benny Boscio spearheaded this grievance relentlessly for over a year until a favorable decision by the court was attained."
  • Sep26
    Rikers Inmate Who Allegedly Stabbed Two Officers Charged With Attempted Murder
    "This is just another example of the lack of staffing that we have in the central punitive segregation area, and a lack of training that we have to combat the problems that we face everyday," said President Norman Seabrook of the New York City Correction Officers' Benevolent Association.
  • Sep19
    Family of Murdered Harlem Basketball Star Calls for End to Violence
    Norman Seabrook, president of the New York City Correction Officers' Benevolent Association, called for an automatic seven-year jail term for anyone caught with an illegall firearm. "They go to Rikers Island, they do six months, eight months, a year and come out and pick up another gun," said Seabrook. "It's time for us to change the laws to make these young men accountable," he added.
  • Sep18
    Candle Sales Shoot Up As People Are Shot Down, And Memorials Are Held For Loved Ones Lost
    "We have one child killing another child," said Norman Seabrook, president of the city's NYC Correction Officers' Benevolent Association. "Change the law, so if they have a gun in their hand, we'll put their ass in a cell."
  • Sep9
    Mets to Offer Complimentry Tickets to New York City First Responders!
    Mets to Donate Half the Proceeds from Special $10 Ticket Offer to Tuesday's Children FLUSHING, N.Y., September 9, 2011 - The New York Mets today announced they will offer complimentary tickets to New York City First Responders and their families for the September 11 Remembrance Ceremony at 7:30 p.m. and the Mets-Cubs game to follow at Citi Field.
  • Aug29
    City Officials Say Rikers Island Is Safe From Storm
    In response to concerns about the safety of Rikers Island during Hurricane Irene, city officials said Saturday that the prison facility is safe from the storm.
  • Mar21
    COBA Announces Additional Legal Services Available to All Active Correction Officers
    Union will cover all legal fees associated with applications and submissions for disability retirement benefits.
  • Apr28
    The Council's Response to the Mayor’s FY Preliminary Budget and Preliminary Management Report
    The City Council believes that eliminating or reducing VSF benefits will not and should not occur.