Open Recommendations (20 total)

Bureau of Prisons: BOP Could Further Enhance its COVID-19 Response by Capturing and Incorporating Lessons Learned

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3 Open Recommendations
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Bureau of Prisons The Director of BOP should develop and implement an approach for ensuring its facilities are applying, as appropriate, best practices and lessons learned related to COVID-19 and future public health emergency response efforts. (Recommendation 3)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

BOP concurred with this recommendation but has not provided additional details on how it plans to address it, as of August 30, 2021. When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Bureau of Prisons The Director of BOP should routinely evaluate how it communicates its COVID-19 guidance to facility staff and modify its approach, as needed, based on the results to ensure BOP protocols are clearly communicated to staff. (Recommendation 1)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

BOP concurred with this recommendation but has not provided additional details on how it plans to address it, as of August 30, 2021. When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.
Bureau of Prisons The Director of BOP should develop and implement an approach to capture and share best practices and lessons learned for responding to COVID-19 and future public health emergencies as discussed among BOP officials at their regular teleconferences. (Recommendation 2)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

BOP concurred with this recommendation but has not provided additional details on how it plans to address it, as of August 30, 2021. When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

Bureau of Prisons: Opportunities Exist to Better Analyze Staffing Data and Improve Employee Wellness Programs

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7 Open Recommendations
3 Priority
Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Bureau of Prisons The Director of BOP should develop and implement a method that ensures its Employee Assistance Program participation and cost data are collected in a more timely and reliable manner. (Recommendation 5)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

BOP concurred with this recommendation and indicated it has begun taking early steps to address it. In June 2021, BOP reported that it hired a contractor to assist the agency over several months in implementing a method for collecting Employee Assistance Program participation and cost data. We will continue to monitor BOP's progress toward addressing this recommendation.
Bureau of Prisons
Priority Rec.
Priority recommendations are those that GAO believes warrant priority attention from heads of key departments or agencies.
The Director of BOP should conduct a risk assessment of its overtime and augmentation use, including identifying risks to staff, inmates, and institution security; and determining actions to respond, as appropriate. (Recommendation 3)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

BOP concurred with this recommendation and has begun taking early steps to address it. In June 2021, BOP reported that it hired a contractor to assist the agency over several months to assess overtime and augmentation usage and develop an overtime calculation tool. According to BOP, this should provide them with additional tools to help the agency make informed staffing decisions, among other things. We will continue to monitor BOP's progress toward addressing this recommendation.
Bureau of Prisons
Priority Rec.
Priority recommendations are those that GAO believes warrant priority attention from heads of key departments or agencies.
The Director of BOP should develop and implement a reliable method, or amend existing methods, for calculating staffing levels at BOP institutions. (Recommendation 1)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

BOP concurred with this recommendation and has begun taking early steps to address it. In June 2021, BOP reported that it hired a contractor to assist the agency in calculating staffing levels at BOP institutions. The contractor will work over several months with staff across BOP Human Resources, BOP regional offices, and BOP institutions to assess existing methods for calculating the BOP's current staffing levels and recommend improvements. We will continue to monitor BOP's progress toward addressing this recommendation.
Bureau of Prisons The Director of BOP should develop and implement a method to routinely collect and evaluate employee feedback on its Employee Assistance Program such as leveraging existing tools or creating new ones, as applicable. (Recommendation 6)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

BOP concurred with this recommendation and indicated it has begun taking early steps to address it. In June 2021, BOP reported that it hired a contractor to assist the agency over several months in implementing methods to collect and evaluate feedback in its Employee Assistance Programs. We will continue to monitor BOP's progress toward addressing this recommendation.
Bureau of Prisons
Priority Rec.
Priority recommendations are those that GAO believes warrant priority attention from heads of key departments or agencies.
The Director of BOP should assess the outcomes of the staffing incentives it utilizes by developing performance measures and goals, measuring outcomes against them, and adjusting incentives, as appropriate. (Recommendation 4)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

BOP concurred with this recommendation and indicated it has begun taking early steps to address it. In June 2021, BOP reported that it hired a contractor to assist the agency over several months by analyzing past usage of incentives and developing recommendations on whether to adjust incentives in the future, among other things. We will continue to monitor BOP's progress toward addressing this recommendation.
Bureau of Prisons The Director of BOP should develop and implement a plan for analyzing data to help identify and address the causes and potential impacts of staffing challenges on staff and inmates. (Recommendation 2)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

BOP concurred with this recommendation and has begun taking early steps to address it. In June 2021, BOP reported that it hired a contractor to assist the agency over several months in analyzing data to identify and address impacts of staffing challenges. We will continue to monitor BOP's progress toward addressing this recommendation.
Bureau of Prisons The Director of BOP should utilize the suicide data it collects to routinely assess the suicide rate among BOP staff and tailor its suicide prevention training materials to address the unique challenges that high-risk groups may face. (Recommendation 7)
Open

Actions to satisfy the intent of the recommendation have not been taken or are being planned, or actions that partially satisfy the intent of the recommendation have been taken.

DOJ concurred with our recommendation. When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.