Karen Hetherson, Assistant Deputy Commissioner, Administration
P.O. Box 946, Norfolk, MA 02056
Phone: (508) 850-7888
The Division of Human Resources (DHR) provides a multitude of services to our staff and their families. DHR units include: Employee Assistance Services, Hearings Unit, Internal Affairs Unit, Labor Relations, Payroll, Personnel, Policies and Procedures, Prosecution Unit, I/A Worker's Compensation and Domestic Violence for the Department of Correction.
The Domestic Violence Office is a conduit for employees and their families seeking assistance in order to increase safety, both on and off the job. This office is responsible for identification and facilitation of resources, monitoring of civil and criminal issues, training, informational campaigns, and insuring the accountability and enforcement of Department policy (103 DOC 238), state, and federal laws as it applies to domestic violence.
Employee Assistance Services Unit
The Employee Assistance Services Unit (EASU) is a full service program that provides 24/7, 365 days a year accessibility for crisis intervention and peer counseling, family counseling, financial and credit assistance and military peer support. The EASU formulates treatment programs designed to meet the needs of individuals and makes referrals to appropriate community resources.
The Military Peer Support Program was established to ensure the health and safety of employees returning from military service and to assist them with any transitional issues they may face relating to pre-deployment, active-deployment, or post-deployment.
The Hearings Unit consists of five hearing officers and one personnel officer. The hearing officers conduct Commissioner’s Hearings, where a due process hearing is conducted to determine whether an employee violated Department of Correction rules, regulations or polices. The hearing provides the employee the opportunity to be heard.
The Worker's Compensation Unit develops, monitors and implements all of the Department's Workers' Compensation action, policies and procedures to ensure that the Department is in compliance with all rules, regulations and laws governing unit activity.
The Labor Relations section assumes responsibility for all grievances, arbitrations and civil service appeals filed by bargaining unit employees. The Labor Relations section also coordinates all issues of negotiations with the Commonwealth Human Resources Division and regularly represents the Department at a variety of forums including the Civil Service Commission, Labor Arbitration and the Division of Labor Relations.
The Personnel unit develops, monitors and implements all Department personnel transactions by coordinating all Department’s personnel actions, policies and procedures to ensure hiring, promotions, transfers and all human resources programs are effectively and efficiently administered.
The Payroll section is responsible for processing the bi-weekly payroll for the Department of Correction. The payroll function is complicated by the Department's operating schedules, numerous collective bargaining agreements, and a variety of different pay regulations. The Payroll unit oversees the administration of all employee benefits, inclusive to Group Insurance Commission, Deferred Compensation, and third-party deductions.
Programs & Policy
The Programs and Policy Unit provides a number of services to staff and other Agencies. The Unit is also responsible for the Achievement and Competency Enhancement System (ACES), which is the department’s management evaluation system. In addition, the Unit oversees twenty-four department policies as well as the revision and development of management questionnaires, compiling documentation for the American Correctional Association (ACA), in conjunction with HRD, revise and develop civil service exams and works with the department’s Contract Manager in preparing Request for Responses (RFR).
The Department’s Prosecution Unit seeks to ensure that employees are consistently held accountable for violations of the Department’s rules, regulations and policies, which are designed to promote the safe, effective, operation of the Department’s institutions. Accordingly, members of the Unit advocate on behalf of the Department at Commissioner’s hearings and represent the Department regarding disciplinary matters before the Civil Service Commission and at arbitrations.
The Prevention and Elimination of Workplace Violence Policy (103 DOC 237) has provided the Department with the opportunity to work in a concerted effort on this issue. Resources for those employees dealing with or perpetrating workplace violence are offered through the Employee Assistance Services Unit, Domestic Violence Office, and Office of Diversity and Equal Opportunity. The Internal Affairs Unit is responsible for reviewing those incidents of workplace violence that occur on or off of Commonwealth property. Training is provided with the assistance of the Division of Staff Development.