Randel H. Latoza, is Jail Superintendent and Warden of Quezon City Jail. He obtained the degree of Master of National Security Administration from the National Defense College of the Philippines in 2013, and Master in Management, Public Administration from the Philippine Christian University in 2012. Since joining the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) 22 years ago, he has been a recipient of service awards such as the 2008 BJMPRO 4A Best District Jail Warden of Calabarzon Region, Best District Jail Warden for the years 2006 and 2007, and Best Municipal Warden in 2003, among other distinctions. In 2007, the Philippine Civil Service Commission conferred to him the Dangal ng Bayan Award. Supt. Latoza has a B.S. Engineering degree from Notre Dame of Marbel University and a B.A. Public Safety degree from the Philippine National Police Academy.
Managing The Quezon City Jail: A Warden’s Perspective
The Quezon City Jail is the main detention facility in the most populous urban center in the Philippines. Currently, it houses approximately 2800 detainees in a 9144 square meters of floor space. In these conditions, each detainee is allotted 0.40 square meters of living space, manned by a handful of BJMP staff on rotational basis at a ratio of 1:107 jail officer to Person Deprived of Liberty (PDL) ratio. At the height of President Duterte’s all-out war on drugs, the detainee population has spiked-up to 4100 in August 2016 compounding even more the already depressing insufficiencies, manpower, and basic living necessities.
The presentation discusses the dynamics of these insufficiencies and how these ameliorate to the production of a distinctive jail culture. More importantly, it also attempts to put into perspective the various coping mechanisms that officers and the administration need to negotiate everyday to bring about order while preserving the institutional mandates of the bureau. The presentation will delve on the dynamics of the essential components of coping mechanism of jail staff and PDL. These components include the structure, organization and culture that characterize the coping mechanism brought about by resource insufficiencies.
In dealing with the conundrum that besets attainment of the bureau’s mandate of humane safekeeping and development of persons deprived of liberty, the Quezon City Jail management has been refocusing on enhancing and sustaining four essential elements towards effective and efficient jail management: classification, housing, programming and documentation. Seemingly, the refocus on these critical domains and whole of justice sector approach (law enforcement, prosecution, courts, jail/prison, and community) will strengthen the overarching theme of effective offender intervention that shall constitute and produce a public value account.