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|January 7, 2011
Director of Communications
COMMUNITY SERVICE CREWS ON HAND FOR SNOW REMOVAL
| The probationers were clearing snow from courthouse steps during
the recent blizzard.
As meteorologists predict snow and cities and towns throughout the Commonwealth anticipate clean-up, the Massachusetts Trial Court Community Service Program is organizing crews of offenders for snow removal duty.
“Our staff is fully prepared to assist all departments from courthouses to municipalities and non-profit agencies. Although court-ordered, a sense of pride and achievement is clearly portrayed by our participants, while clearing passageways and handicap ramps. Their labor is often rewarded with warm regards and thanks from passing citizens,” said David Skocik, Statewide Supervisor of the Community Service Program.
Offenders performed nearly 3,000 hours of community service shoveling snow following last week’s snowstorm which buried New England in 20 inches of snow.
Snow removal performed by probationers saves cash-strapped communities hundreds of thousands of dollars and eases the burden on Public Works departments and non-profit agencies across the state. Community service provides offenders, unable to afford court and probation fees, the opportunity to work in lieu of fees while giving back to the community in a positive way.
Here is a statewide snapshot of the community service work performed over a three-day period by probationers following last week’s blizzard:
In Berkshire County, seven offenders cleared the way for students, teachers, and administrators to enter the Hoosac Valley High School where the probationers shoveled sidewalks. The probationers worked 28 hours of community service.
Probationers, ordered to perform 908 hours of community service in Essex County, assisted public works departments, an animal shelter and a church by removing snow from sidewalks, crosswalks, ramps, and staircases in seven cities and towns north of Boston. The agencies and departments that benefited from this service included the Lawrence Department of Public Works, Haverhill Department of Public Works, Salisbury Department of Public Works, Lynn Department of Public Works, Swampscott Department of Public Works, Department of Recreation and Conservation, Northeast Animal Shelter, and Sacred Heart Church.
Franklin County offenders dedicated 80 hours of community service work to digging out and shoveling snow from sidewalks, stairways, and ramps at Franklin County Court House, Greenfield Department of Public Works and the Orange District Court parking lot. Community Service crews were dispatched from Greenfield District and Franklin Superior courts as well as Franklin Community Corrections Center.
In Hampden County, probationers spent 180 hours removing snow from sidewalks and crosswalks at Ludlow Department of Public Works, Housing Authority and School Department; West Springfield Public Works; Holyoke Department of Public Works; Agawam Housing Authority; Brimfield Housing Authority; and Our Lady of Fatima Church in Brimfield. The offenders are on probation at Springfield District Court, Holyoke District Court, Hampden Superior Court, and the Hampshire Community Counseling Center.
Hampshire County probationers committed 80 hours to shoveling sidewalks, ramps, and stairways at the Hadley Housing Authority and in and around the town of Agawam and the city of Northampton.
In Middlesex County, offenders worked 150 hours shoveling snow along Summer Street in Lowell, around Malden District Court, Newton District Court, Newton Parks and Recreation Department, Waltham High School and the Natick Housing Authority. The crews were dispatched from Lowell, Newton, Waltham, Natick, and Framingham District Courts. Also participating in this effort were probationers from Middlesex Superior Court and the Lowell Community Counseling Center.
Norfolk County offenders performed 360 hours of community service shoveling snow at courthouses, churches, town halls - including Quincy District Court, the Trinity and Congregational churches of Weymouth, Nantasket Avenue in Hull, and the sidewalks at Plainville Town Hall.
The Community Service Program fulfilled a request by the Quincy Department of Public Works to shovel snow at City Hall, along Hancock Street, and to dig out five hydrants located throughout the city.
Community Service crews also assisted the Department of Conservation and Reservation in clearing the entrances to the historic Abigail Adams House, the Brookwood Farm, and Houghton's Pond. Probationers also shoveled sidewalks on Chickatawbut Street in Canton and along Route 38 and River Road in Milton and Route 28 in Milton.
In Plymouth County, probationers spent 480 hours removing snow from courts and municipal facilities. They also shoveled out more than 300 fire hydrants and miles of sidewalks. Among the facilities that were dug out were Brockton District, Plymouth County Juvenile, and Plymouth Superior courts. The Plymouth County Registry of Deeds, Brockton Water Department, Stoughton Water Department, and the Plymouth Water Department were serviced as were the Avon and Plymouth Housing Authorities.
Suffolk County offenders performed 500 hours of community service shoveling snow along the Southwest Corridor, Mattapan Square and McBride Street as well as areas in the Blue Hills. The probationers assisted the Massachusetts Highway Department in the East Milton Square and shoveled Cabot Street to clear the way for commuters using the MBTA. The Boston Parks and Recreation Department also turned to Community Service for help in clearing Sousa and Prescott Parks as well as the public stairway at Ruth Street.
In Worcester County, probationers spent 180 hours removing snow from sidewalks, fire hydrants and crosswalks in Worcester, Webster, Gardner, and Fitchburg. They also cleared snow at the Senior Center in Fitchburg. Offenders were dispatched from Worcester, Fitchburg, and Dudley District Courts as well as Worcester Superior Court and Webster Community Corrections Center.