Quick Answer: How To Get A Job As A Corrections Officer?

How to Become a Correctional Officer

Correctional officer jobs are available in every state and almost every county in the United States, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, which predicts a 5% growth rate in the field over the next several years.

Step 1 – Meet the Minimum Requirements

The federal, state, and local governments operate prisons and jails, and each has its own hiring standards and practices. The federal minimum standards are clear:. Be a United States citizen. The majority of states require you to have a valid driver’s license.

Step 2 – Obtain a Degree or Experience

Most states accept prior military service as a substitute for post-secondary education, and some states offer veterans higher starting pay, seniority, and bonuses.

Step 3 – Apply for a Position

Correctional officers’ primary responsibility is to supervise inmates, which often necessitates the use of physical restraint or restraining devices. Applicants are tested on their physical stamina and ability to complete the physical tasks required in a correctional environment.

Step 4 – Complete Correctional Officer Training at an Approved Training Academy

Most states require that the candidate complete a training course, which in some cases must be completed prior to employment being offered. In most states, the training program has two components: practical skills training and classroom-based training, with the goal of preparing the recruit to deal effectively with potentially violent inmates.

Procedural Training

Many states use mock prison environments and prisoners as part of their training programs because they have very specific criteria that must be followed in a correctional institution setting. Failure to follow these criteria can result in legal ramifications for the institution and put the officer in danger.

Firearms Training

Almost all states require correctional officers to complete firearms training; most officers who work with inmates do not carry weapons, but they must be skilled in the use of firearms, which typically includes pistols, rifles, and shotguns.

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In-Service Training

Depending on the state, a probationary period can last anywhere from a few months to two years.

Basic Fitness Training

The correctional officer is the staff member who will have the most contact with inmates, and the classroom training is designed to ensure that all recruits have a basic understanding of rehabilitative methods and the law, which candidates with college degrees do not always have.

Rehabilitative Methods Training

Correctional officers are expected to gain a basic understanding of these programs in order to identify worthy candidates in order to comply with federal and state mandates aimed at reducing recidivism through treatment and rehabilitative programs.

Legal Training

Although a law degree is extremely uncommon among correctional officers, a basic understanding of key areas of the law is required to ensure the smooth operation of the institution. At a minimum, most programs teach the following concepts:

Step 5 – Become a Sworn Officer

A Correctional Officer’s responsibilities include: enforcing rules and maintaining order; supervising inmates’ activities; inspecting facilities to ensure they meet standards; and assisting in the rehabilitation and counseling of offenders.

Is it hard to get a correctional officer job?

Given that only 3-4% of all applicants for correctional officer positions make it through the entire selection process in most states, it’s critical for anyone interested in working in corrections to be fully informed about the various application steps and to spend time preparing both physically and mentally.

Is being a corrections officer a good job?

A career as a corrections officer can be stable, well-paying, and rewarding; in fact, according to BLS data from May 2017, California has the highest annual mean wage of all states, at $71,630, and the second highest employment level of correctional officers in the country, with 36,730 jobs.

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Do correctional officers make good money?

State correctional officers earn $21.01 per hour, or $43,710 per year, while federal correctional officers earn $25.15 per hour, or $52,310 per year.

How much do correctional officers make a week?

Complete a 12-week correctional officer basic training program at the University of Alberta.

Average Wage $36.55 / hr
Average Salary $75,595.00 / yr
Hours Per Week 39.6 hrs

How many days a week do correctional officers work?

Correctional officers typically work an eight-hour day, five days a week, on rotating shifts; however, because prison and jail security must be provided around the clock, officers may be required to work all hours of the day and night, weekends, and holidays.

What are the disadvantages of being a correctional officer?

In addition, compared to other law enforcement occupations, jail guards have a higher risk of chronic injury, high cholesterol, hypertension, and heart disease. Work conflicts, fatigue, a heavy workload, and insufficient resources all contribute to stress among correctional officers.

Is a correctional officer a stressful job?

Working long shifts behind bars day in and day out can and does take a toll on correctional officers. Every aspect of the job, including inmate interactions, workplace environment, and resulting home life, can contribute to the build-up of this stress.

Which is more dangerous police or corrections?

According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, only police officers have more violent incidents at work than correction officers: in 2011, there were 254 workplace assaults and violent injuries reported for every 10,000 full-time COs, which is 36 times the rate for all American workers.

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What is the life expectancy of a correctional officer?

According to a recent study of the effects of job stress on correctional officers, a correctional officer’s life expectancy is 59 years, compared to 75 years for the national average.

Do correctional officers get paid more than police officers?

So, according to the BLS, the 2018 median annual salary for correctional officers was $44,330, while police officers and detectives have a higher earning potential, with the 2018 median annual salary for police officers and detectives being $63,380.

Who are the highest paid correctional officers?

Table 1: The States with the Highest Paying Correctional Officers and Jailers (2020 Survey)

Rank State Average Salary i
1 California $83,030
2 Massachusetts $74,550
3 Rhode Island $74,220
4 New Jersey $73,920

Do correctional officers get a lot of overtime?

The pay with the BOP is determined by your job location (locality pay). Most officers can work as much overtime as they want, but too much can quickly burn you out. The majority of overtime will be available at medical facilities, and the benefits are competitive with many private sectors.

How much do correctional officers make hourly?

The highest hourly average (median) wages are earned in Alberta, at $37.26 per hour, and the lowest average (median) wages are earned in Prince Edward Island, at $26.89 per hour, according to the latest figures.

How do you become a CO?

To Become a California State Correctional Officer, You Must Meet the Following Requirements

  1. Be at least 21 years old.
  2. Be a US citizen.
  3. Have a high school diploma or GED.
  4. Be in good physical condition.
  5. Be eligible to own/operate a firearm (i.e., no felony or domestic violence misdemeanor convictions).

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