The Illinois Department of Corrections has begun checking prison guards for contraband as they leave work. Seven Illinois prisons conducted shakedowns of their corrections officers last week. The guards and their union claim the searches are retaliation against employees who spoke out about crowded conditions and plans to close Illinois’ supermax prison at Tamms. The guards said they’ve never been searched before. A Department of Corrections spokeswoman said the searches are routine and designed to halt the flow of contraband that includes cell phones as well as drugs and weapons.