In The Daily Examiner on 30thth June 2012:
“Yesterday the Department of Corrective Services announced a savage restructure of the Grafton Jail which would strip all but 60 beds from the 240-bed facility…..
However, Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis has defended the decision and blamed the previous Labor Government for allowing the jail to reach such a low point.
Mr Gulaptis yesterday described the jail as a time bomb waiting to go off, harbouring a culture of bullying and harassment among staff and inmates.
He claimed a confidential report into the prison said there were 11 staff who should have been disciplined for bullying and harassing inmates and other staff.”
The Daily Examiner letter to the editor 2nd July 2012:
Gulaptis lost plot
GEE, having a National Party MP in our electorate sure has helped, with 100 jobs gone from Corrective Services, a homeless service now missing from the lower Clarence area.
You really are on top of things Chris. What exactly have you done for the area?
The National Party is supposed to be in this with the Liberals, but all I can see is jobs leaving this area to go to an area held by a Liberal Party member in Cessnock.
Mr Gulaptis, what the hell are you made of?
Your party has gutted this valley and the commentary in The Daily Examiner on the front page Saturday was perfect and the picture was absolutely spot-on, except the creature pulling the heart out should have had Mr Gulaptis's face on it.
Are you going to take responsibility for your party killing this area? How much in income will now not be circulating around this valley thanks to your party?
This is going to have a large flow-on effect; the 100 jobs, Mr Gulaptis, will turn into 200 jobs in other related industries.
Already this job is proving far to much for you and you have let the citizens of Grafton down.
A selection of online comments.....
By JASMITH from Grafton,
Just what we needed to read in the paper today, that our esteemed Member for Clarence, Chris Gulaptis calls your husband and dad a Bully. It was a tough enough day for the 100 workers without insults and name calling......WHO'S THE BULLY???????????
By EmmaB from Yamba,
On the front page today’s issue of The Daily Examiner. Is that National Party MP for Clarence, Chris Gulaptis, depicted with a bloodied hand holding aloft the bleeding heart just ripped out of Grafton's chest? Looks suspiciously like.....
By Fedup from Junction Hill,
I am left wondering. Why punish all the staff including civilian staff for the abhorrent behaviour of the few ? Why were these 11 people dealt with by the senior managers of the prison system? OR was there another agenda here!!!!!! To all those affected I wish you all the best for the future.
As for The Honourable Member Mr Gulaptis do not come to my door seeking endorsement for the next election especially after your comments. Instead of blaming the former government who by the way did not have a sitting member here look to your own backyard. When all the dust settles would the last person leaving Grafton please turn off the light because the ripple effect of this act of bastardry will echo through this city for years to come.
By willbewatching from Grafton,
This is a horrendous result for Grafton. Economically this will hit hard, talk about time bombs, the effect on the local economy is now the ticking time bomb. I wonder how many residents are here because of the Gaol. I am, my family moved here when I was young because my father transferred to Grafton Gaol and we all stayed. To use the culture at the place as a reason to close is a smoke screen, surely a change at the top, some targeted transfers, and an education process would fix the culture, but no the easy fix is to close the thing. This closure is about money pure and simple, saving money to build a new entertainment centre in Sydney among many other really important things. Well I would expect that not many from here will be going to the new entertainment centre, they will be busy trying to keep their businesses afloat.
By UrsulaTunks from Grafton,
I agree pwalsh. I think our new State Member is probably wondering what the hell he bought into when he took the decision to seek pre selection and ultimately election to the state seat! I don't give a rats bottom about how the situation was allowed to develop, I care about the impact on our community of this decision. Has the government any plan as to how to compensate our community for this action? Will they relocate another department here to fill the massive loss to our local economy as a result of this decision? Or are they just happy to keep us debilitated and as powerless as possible so they can rape and pillage the area for the CSG needed in their electorates in the cities? The electorate of Clarence has been gutted by a government that we were promised would finally give us a voice and some opportunity. Shame of Basil O'Fullivit and his factionally driven power hungry minions.