Menard Correctional Center is a Level One maximum-security adult male facility located in Chester, Illinois. It is the largest maximum-security facility in the Illinois Department of Corrections (DOC).
Read JHA's latest report here. (PDF)
Total Population: 3,666
Maximum-Security Population: 3,144
Maximum-Security Rated Capacity: 2,600
Average Annual Cost Per Inmate (FY 2011): $19,824
Average Age: 38
(Source IDOC 2/11/13
- Opened in 1878, the facility has serious maintenance needs that will cost more than $12 million to address.
- Publicized incidents of staff assaults and recent inmate deaths have brought attention to high tensions at Menard, where physical plant issues, constant lockdowns, and allegations of unprofessional staff conduct and neglected inmate grievances are common.
- Staffing at Menard has been inadequate for many years. Influx of staff from other southern facilities closures should somewhat improve conditions.
- Inmates at Menard distrust the internal discipline and grievance procedures.
- Since JHA’s 2011 monitoring visit, Menard has made several improvements including reducing its segregation population, notably of inmates suffering from mental illnesses; attempting to isolate and reduce lockdowns by housing inmates by aggression levels; and working with staff to strengthen communication and accountability.
Read JHA's 2012 report here.
Read JHA's 2011 report here.
JHA's work on healthcare in the Illinois Department of Correction is supported by a generous grant from the Michael Reese Health Trust