Being a correction officer is not a simple task. Each and every correction officer has an everyday regimen, stress, threat, and has to find out to acquire compliance of every inmate. Every day in a prison working with inmates can be a difficulty; some days might appear much easier than other days. There is a day-to-day regimen and schedule that each correction officer has to concern terms with. The tasks might be operating in the backyard to monitoring inmates on the work team.
The jobs differ with each officer. But no matter which task, each one is or can be really difficult when it concerns preserving and keeping prisoners in order. Each task can be extremely difficult, but it depends on the correction officer to take disciplinary actions in a mannerly method.
A correction officer works everyday to “keep control and order within a prison” (Seiter, 2011, p. 390). Every day each prisoner needs to be under guidance at all times and each correction officer makes sure that security is kept properly.
Each and every correction officer has an assigned task they need to carry out. There are generally 7 categories’ that a correction officer can be appointed to. These categories consist of living units, work information supervisors, commercial store and school officers, backyard officers, administration building projects, boundary security and relief officers.
“Each Particular task has post orders, a comprehensive description of the activities that are required to be performed throughout the day, typically includes the time they are to occur”(Seiter,2011, p. 391). Post orders is to inform the correction officer how to do each specific task. Each project that is performed has a time schedule. The correction officer likewise needs to report a detailed report on the assignment. Every minute, of every day while the correction officer is on duty, it very essential. For example, one minute an officer might be strolling inmates to their cells and after that the next minute, they could be breaking up a battle. The main part of being a correction officer is to never reveal any signs of weak point to any inmates.
If any signs of weakness are shown, the inmates can and will use that against the officer and try everything to bring that officer down. With an inmate using an officers weakness against them, can cause a lot of stress and danger to the correction officer. Stress is very typical with being a correction officer. Stress can come from overtime shifts, not enough employees on hand, violence in the facility, or problems with other staff members. Many programs are available to help correction officers to deal with stress because stress will always be a part of being a correction officer. “Job stress has been found to have numerous negative mental and physical effects on correctional staff. Cheek and Miller (1983) reported that correctional officers have a higher than expected likelihood of hypertension, heart attacks, and other stress-related illnesses.
Ultimately, the health of the correctional employee can suffer to the point that it shortens the person’s life. Both Cheek (1984) and Woodruff (1993) reported that correctional officers die far sooner than expected as compared to the national life expectancy, and stress is the leading reason for the shortened life expectancy”(Lambert, 2006). Stress is not good for a person’s health and that is why these facilities offer options to deal with stress while working in such facilities. These trainings help the correction officer to help avoid the stressful situations and how to deal with their own personal stress. Counseling is offered for the correction officers and the families. This helps them to deal with stress and keep the levels of stress down.
The best way to help keep stress down is keeping a healthy active life, such as diets, exercise, and trying to maintain financial security. All though, stress seems to be an important role with being a correction officer, it’s not. The most important is gaining compliance from inmates. This means that a correction officer needs to deal with inmates without threatening them or disciplining an inmate without their being a breakout in the prison or the inmate rebelling against any orders that are given.” It is not easy to gain compliance from inmates already in prison, many of whom rebel against all authority and are serving long sentences with very little to lose”(Seiter,2011,p.394). If any inmates do not follow any orders, the correction officer has the power to punish them in the appropriate way.
The most important skill to use is interpersonal communication. This communication allows correction officers to treat inmates humanly as possible. If a correction officer treats an inmate with disrespect, it is most likely that the inmate will get very angry and rebel against that officer. Inmates do not like to be treated unfairly, as they should not be treated unfair in any given circumstance. Every inmate has the knowledge of knowing they should follow rules and what they should and should not do.
It can be very stressful being a correction officer. The main key is to have training to deal with stress and know what kind of stress they may be in for. Stress can come from many different directions and effect a correction officer, but as long as they know what they were getting into before they got into the situation, then they should be able to deal with the stress pretty good. As long as a correction officer can be fair and treat inmates fairly, then that can also help reduce stress and make the situations in the facility go a lot smoother.
Eric G Lambert, Nancy Lynne Hogan, & Reva I Allen. (2006). CORRELATES OF CORRECTIONAL OFFICER JOB STRESS: The Impact of Organizational Structure[dagger]. American Journal of Criminal Justice : AJCJ, 30(2), 227-IV. Retrieved October 17, 2011, from Research Library. (Document ID: 1167641161). Seiter, P. 2011. Corrections: An Introduction. Pearson education inc. 3rd edition Upper Saddle River, New Jersey.
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Life of a Corrections Officer. (2017, Mar 30). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/life-of-a-corrections-officer-essay