Harmer Contacts Tennessee Health Commissioner


by Sharon Rondeau

(Jun. 12, 2018) — On Wednesday, June 6, 2018, Morgan County Correctional Complex (MCCX) inmate Grenda Ray Harmer, #88710, wrote to Tennessee Department of Health Commissioner John Dreyzehner to report that the prison “is violating health department food regulations in two areas.”

Harmer said that a section of his unit in Protective Custody (PC) which used to be a kitchenette “was turned into a cell and the food is now being served where inmates rec (have recreational time) and shower. There is no food steward to ensure health department regulation compliance.” Further, he asserted, “Flys [sic] and insects are everywhere and any non-food worker can access the food.”

Harmer’s second complaint was that “2nd shift guards open the food outside the Unit and check inside pans of food where dust, insects and other contaminants are entering the food.”

Harmer indicated that he had enclosed “a copy of my May 8, 2018 letter to the American Correctional Association proving MCCX officials are knowingly and intentionally violating health code violations. Unit #1 P. C. inmates health and safety is being intentionally placed at risk.” [sic]

The Post & Email has a copy of the letter.  As we have reported, the ACA standards are not made available to the public online.

Harmer then asked Dreyzehner, a former Air Force flight surgeon, to take five steps to ameliorate the reported violations, which include notifying TDOC Commissioner Tony Parker and converting the cell back to a kitchenette.

In previous letters and memos, Harmer made the same request about the kitchenette to then-MCCX Warden Shawn Phillips but was told it would not be done.  Last year, Harmer raised similar concerns about the food service in the PC unit when he reported finding hair “and other foreign objects” on his food tray on multiple occasions as well as other aberrations.

Parties copied on the memo are Tennessee state representative John Ray Clemmons, Parker and current MCCX Warden Mike Parris.

Sharon Rondeau has operated The Post & Email since April 2010, focusing on the Obama birth certificate investigation and other government corruption news.  She has reported prolifically on constitutional violations within Tennessee’s prison and judicial systems.

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