How To Become A Correctional Officer – Once you’ve decided to become a prison officer, there are a few things you should know about the role before you apply.
This video features background footage of prison officers performing a variety of activities such as walking around the prison grounds, talking to inmates and other prison officers, in the office, in the classroom and in industry. They include male and female prison officers of various ages and backgrounds. Prison officer job candidates are screened after completing an online application and completing assessments.
How To Become A Correctional Officer
Greetings. If you are interested in becoming a prison officer, this video will help you decide if it is the right career for you.
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I’ll tell you what the job is all about, take you through the stages of the application process and explain how becoming a prison officer could just be the start of an exciting career at Corrections Victoria.
We are people who know that everyone deserves a second chance. Every day we invest in giving men and women who have been convicted or detained the opportunity to make better life choices.
Every interaction is a chance to be a positive role model and support better outcomes. We support prisoners with their self-improvement and goal-setting so that they are less likely to re-offend when they return to society.
We also help men and women build skills to improve their relationships with important friends and family members.
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We know how important a support network outside the facility is for people during their sentence and when they are released.
Many of the people we work with have experienced trauma such as abusive family environments, disrupted education, and alcohol and drug abuse.
This means that there are many challenges and complexities that we need to be aware of and try to help them overcome.
We keep the facility safe and secure through dynamic security, which encompasses all aspects of prison management. From the conversations we have and the observations we make to the cell checks we make and the intelligence we gather, everything we do ensures that the prison is a safe environment for everyone.
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By becoming a Prison Officer, you will join the Corrections Victoria team who will support your career development. We help you follow a path that meets your career aspirations and help you find a work-life balance.
Our staff also have many opportunities to develop their careers by taking on new roles, furthering their studies or even working in different locations.
Then there is the wider workforce, which resides within the Department of Safety and Community. Becoming a prison officer can be just the beginning of an imposing career. Over time you will learn about the many opportunities that may present themselves.
There are avenues for promotion for those who will thrive in leadership positions, such as operational supervisors and operational managers.
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If you have worked as a craftsman, have experience working with machines or have worked in restaurants or bakeries, your skills can be applied in the industrial sector at our facilities.
Many of the men and women in prison work in these industries to help them develop new skills and make their time in our facilities productive.
There are many other areas you can also go into such as prison intelligence, emergency response team, business support, data management or workforce development and education roles.
We have teams of culturally and linguistically diverse people. This includes Liaison Men and Aboriginal Liaison Men who support men and women to engage with their families, understand their cultural identities and networks.
Why Become A Co
All of these opportunities are within our Corrections workforce and accessible when you become a prison officer. The largest team you will be part of is the Victorian Public Service, also known as VPS.
There are many advantages to being a public servant. We know we are serving the community and doing something Victorians believe is important.
Being part of the VPS also gives us the opportunity to move into other roles within the Victorian Government.
Do you see becoming a correctional officer as the start of a career that can take you in many exciting directions?
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The good news is that you can come from a variety of professional backgrounds and be a fantastic prison officer. No special qualifications are needed for you to make an application. It is your life experience that has likely already prepared you to succeed in this role.
When we look at your work experience, we are interested to see how well you worked in a team. We are looking for clear, effective communicators who are naturally empathetic and non-judgmental.
We want to hear how you’ve shown you can work well in challenging circumstances and how you’ve been able to show resilience to bounce back from adversity and maintain a positive frame of mind.
As a new prison officer, you will start your career with an eight-week training program which includes enrollment in a Certificate III in Correctional Practice.
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This sets you up for success from day one, as it also includes on-the-job training. Certificate III will be highly valued when applying for ongoing positions and for more senior roles as well.
After training is completed, temporary staff can nominate their availability for work and full-time staff rotate on a fortnightly basis.
The list operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and our staff work different shifts during the day and at night. Sometimes shifts can last up to 12 hours. These longer shifts are balanced with good time away from work. This means you can enjoy a work-life balance.
You will sometimes be required to work on weekends and public holidays, but you will be penalized on top of your regular pay. You will find that these penalty rates will significantly increase your take home pay and this is how we know most prison officers earn well above the base rate.
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Bi-weekly lists are written weeks in advance, which means you can plan your life around your next job.
There are several stages in the application process and at each stage our recruitment team will decide whether applicants will move on to the next stage. The various stages can take up to 15 weeks and include assessments, role plays and interviews.
You will gain more knowledge about the prison officer role as you progress through the application process and this will help you decide if the role is right for you.
The first in the application process is the online application. This will take about 30 minutes to complete.
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You must declare any information from your past that may be relevant. This can include any offenses you have committed, including speeding tickets or work that may pose a conflict of interest.
You will then be required to undergo a medical and health assessment. This includes some physical fitness tests and health checks, such as vision, hearing and medical history.
You can find out more on our website about what you will need to do in order to start preparing now for the health assessment.
If you have any questions about the process, we encourage you to contact our recruitment team, who will be happy to help answer any questions you may have.
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There are some additional and important details about the role that you should consider before applying.
All prison officers must be clean-shaven to enable them to wear breathing apparatus in an emergency.
There is a total smoking ban in all Victorian prisons. Staff may not smoke or have tobacco-related products or electronic cigarettes in any part of the facility.
This is a rewarding job that is just the beginning of a meaningful career helping people in prison build better lives.
Police & Corrections
We recommend you read the position description. This will give you an understanding of the expectations and responsibilities of a prison officer. This can help you with your application process and give you a sense of the job requirements.
The highest level of integrity is expected of all employees. On your job application, you are required to fully disclose all crimes or convictions you have had, regardless of the type of crime or when it occurred. It is an important indicator of your level of integrity that you disclose information early in the process.
For security reasons, prison staff are not allowed to have facial hair. Note that there are exceptions for religious reasons.
In most prisons, you must work a 24-hour/seven-day roster including holidays. Each prison has different shift, start and end times.
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There is a total smoking ban in all Victorian prisons. Staff and inmates may not have tobacco-related products or electronic cigarettes in any part of the prison.
To be eligible to be appointed as a prison officer at a Corrections Victoria facility, you must be an Australian or New Zealand citizen or a permanent resident of Australia. You must also hold a Victorian driving license (minimum category P2) and be willing to obtain a current first aid certificate.
Although it is no longer a mandatory requirement for carers to be vaccinated against Covid-19, all staff are strongly advised to maintain their vaccination status in line with the Australian one.
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