Corrections boss: mental health care not core job

Aug 21, 2011

About a quarter of Michigan's 43,000 state prisoners are mentally ill, and new Michigan Corrections Director Dan Heyns says he wants to shift responsibility for their treatment from his department to other agencies.

Heyns says in an interview with The Detroit News that his department "has had a kind of mission creep over the years." He says the department needs to return to its original mission.

Heyns is an ex-Jackson County sheriff and took over the state's prison system in June. He and corrections spokesman Russ Marlan say the department would like to get away from responsibility for parolees.