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Snyder issues statement addressing prison food service issues

Friday, August 8, 2014

LANSING, Mich. – Gov. Rick Snyder today issued the following statement in conjunction with a letter to Aramark regarding food service operations in Michigan prisons. 

“One of our main goals has always been to run state government and state services in the most efficient way possible.  To that end, we are on pace to save Michigan taxpayers $14 million per year by implementing the existing contract between the Department of Corrections (DOC) and Aramark Correctional Services. 

However, the transition to utilizing Aramark’s services has seen errors on both sides of the relationship which are unacceptable and need to be corrected going forward.  Therefore, we will be taking multiple corrective actions to ensure that our prison food service operations are implementing best practices and achieving the same success that Aramark has seen in working with other states.

Michigan will assess a $200,000 fine onto Aramark and require the company to redesign their current training and staffing procedures in close coordination with the DOC.  The fine imposed onto Aramark will be used to implement structural changes on the state side, including appointing an independent Contract Oversight Senior Advisor, not employed by Aramark or the DOC, but working directly in the state’s Executive Office.  This Contract Oversight Senior Advisor will serve as a liaison between Aramark, the DOC, and other state officials, to promote effective communication and the prompt resolution of any performance issues. 

Michigan will also establish a system of independent contract monitors, review the DOC warehousing system, and work with Aramark to establish a set of mutually-agreed performance metrics to be used to objectively measure Aramark’s performance on a monthly basis. 

Aramark has provided services successfully to hundreds of correctional facilities across the country for nearly 40 years.  I fully expect the DOC and Aramark to work in close partnership to ensure the same success here in Michigan.”