POLITICS

Meilleur apologizes for remarks in legislature that inflamed jail guards

05/29/2013 04:14 EDT | Updated 07/29/2013 05:12 EDT
TORONTO - A Progressive Conservative MPP is calling for Community Safety and Correctional Services Minister Madeleine Meilleur to resign over conditions at London's Elgin-Middlesex Detention Centre.

In response to questions in the legislature Tuesday from Tory Jeff Yurek, Meilleur said she wanted to know who was "not doing his job" when drugs or knives were smuggled into the facility.

Yurek told the legislature on Wednesday that 40 correctional officers, insulted by Meilleur's comments, refused to work.

He said the jail was locked down, two fires broke out and a number of inmates were reportedly hospitalized, and accused Meilleur of throwing front-line corrections staff under the bus for her failure to address problems at the facility.

Meilleur said she would be meeting with the union and jail officials to hear first-hand what their concerns are in an effort to improve the situation at Elgin-Middlesex.

And Meilleur apologized to the correctional officers and staff at the jail for her remarks on Tuesday, saying they are doing an extremely good job.

"If I offended someone yesterday, I deeply apologize, because that was not my intent," she told the legislature.

(The Canadian Press, CKOT)