Seward shutters city jail due to lack of staff

Staffing issues forced closure in September
Afternoon FastCast Oct. 11, 2023
Published: Oct. 11, 2023 at 4:16 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - The Seward Community Jail is currently closed due to a lack of staff to operate the facility.

The facility had been used as a temporary detention facility and was built to hold up to 14 people. But City Manager Kat Sorensen says Seward struggled to fill key correctional positions and could not remain open.

In an email, Sorensen says the city has made arrangements with the nearby Spring Creek Correctional facility to handle the community’s detention needs. Spring Creek is run by the Alaska Department of Corrections.

Seward still hopes to reopen the jail, but currently has no estimation for when that would occur.

“We’re continuously recruiting and looking for staff for the jail, but we’re unable to operate it without more people,” Sorensen said in the email.