On May 8th, Department of Corrections Commissioner Dean Williams joined Fairbanks Correctional Center (FCC) Superintendent Tammy Axelsson on a tour of the new Sobering Center in Fairbanks. The Sobering Center provides a safe, secure environment for intoxicated individuals to rest and get connected with resources if they choose to seek help.
Previously, many intoxicated individuals were taken to FCC to stay in a cell overnight, putting stress on staff who were not trained and not equipped with the resources to properly assist. The Sobering Center not only provides adequately trained staff, but also 24-hour monitoring to ensure safety.
“This is a huge advancement in terms of monitoring people, keeping track, and making sure nothing bad is happening,” said Commissioner Williams. Since opening last year, the Sobering Center has seen successful operations, due in large part to the coordination and cooperation of other agencies such as FCC, the Fairbanks Police Department, and other Emergency Medical Services.
“I’m excited about this place because this is the best story there is about how a community has come together,” says Commissioner Williams, ”How we handle those in need says a lot about us as a society. I think the [Fairbanks] community has really answered that call.”