CORRECTIONAL OFFICER I - PRIVATE
DEFINITION OF CLASS:
This is entry level correctional work providing security, custody, care, care, order and discipline for a segment of the inmate population in a County correctional facility. Initially contacts are with classroom instructors to receive instruction, respond to questions and participate in classroom discussions. After completion of formal training, contacts are primarily with facility staff to and receive and transmit information and to receive continuing on-the-job training, the purpose of which is to facilitate the legal confinement and release of persons held at a correctional facility. Employees of this classification are responsible for the direct custody, care, and safety of a group of inmates/arrestees, many of whom exhibit emotional and behavioral problems as well as resistive and uncooperative attitudes.
Employees in this class are responsible for learning on-the-job and in a formal classroom setting the basic techniques, practices and methods of correctional officer work. They are assigned to single post "direct supervision" general inmate housing units and/or other selected multiple posts with more senior Correctional Officers to gain experience in direct supervision, control, and discipline of inmates. Work usually is performed under immediate supervision of a supervisory Correctional Officer or Field Training Officer who initially provides continuous evaluation of work in progress. Employees receive substantial training and instruction in the applications of basic safety and security policies, procedures, and methods with regard to interaction with and supervision of the inmate population; use of equipment, application of post instructions, and implementation of general standard operating procedures. After acquiring knowledge of applicable requirements and procedures, the employee works in strict compliance with these guidelines, referring each situation not covered by instructions to a supervisor for resolution/instruction. The complexity of this work is marked by various duties/assignments which consist of steps and procedures covered by different guides which the employee must learn and from which the employee selects appropriate actions/responses. The impact of this level of work is realized by a small segment of the inmate population over whom an employee in this class exercises immediate control. The work of this class requires employees to spend much of their work day on their feet and/or sitting at a post to patrol, observe, inspect, accompany inmates, and otherwise be aware of all activities taking place in a section of a correctional facility. Work continuously performed amidst an inmate population places employees at considerable risk. An employee in this class is assigned to shifts on an established rotational basis.
EXAMPLES OF DUTIES: (Illustrative Only)
Receives instruction in and, under close supervision, applies standard procedures and methods and follows written post instructions in carrying out activities associated with the secure custody and care of inmates at a daily post assignment (e.g., conducting periodic watch tours and window/wall cell searches, conducting bed checks at required intervals, checking inmate ID, inspecting cleanliness of living quarters, conducting and tallying meal counts, supervising distribution of meal trays and accounting for utensils, conducting frisk or strip searches, confiscating contraband, as necessary, etc.).
Assists in enforces clearly defined institutional rules and procedures by performing standard tasks such as providing input into the daily log, escorting inmates, issuing clothing and bedding, completing routine intake paperwork, conducting perimeter checks of the fence line, etc.
Assists in monitoring and observing inmate behavior; as proficiency increases, advises and/or reminds inmates as necessary of directives, rules, and general information (as contained in the Inmate Guidebook provided to each inmate) concerning conduct and discipline, housing routines, outside communication, communication with correctional officers and staff, security checks, and inmate services/activities; provides information to inmates concerning readily available personal information such as upcoming court dates, status of canteen account, etc.
Receives and forwards inmates' general request forms and grievance forms; if requested, provides assistance to those inmates having difficulty completing the forms.
Checks and monitors personal body alarm and radio equipment to assure proper functioning.
May participate in the processing of arrestees in the Central Processing Unit; as directed and under close supervision, performs such tasks as taking photographs and fingerprints of criminal arrestees, escorting defendants to and from hearings before the District Court Commissioners, and recording hearing and disposition information.
Reports to supervisor or a higher ranking correctional officer those activities/situations that are unusual or irregular and those situations where guidance is needed in order to make the appropriate response or take the appropriate action.
Follows established protocols for controlling, restraining, and securing hostile inmates, calling for assistance as appropriate; implements control and preventive measures to prevent escapes, assaults, suicides, and injuries.
Corrects or reports maintenance problems as detected.
Supervises visits with and telephone calls made by inmates; sorts and distributes mail.
Receives in-service training relating to current operational procedures, emergency procedures, CPR, First Aid, and weapons training, as well as daily shift briefings on operational changes, problems, and pass-on information from the previous shift.
Testifies in court as required.
Performs related duties as required.
Experience: One (1) year of post High School full-time work experience or its equivalent.
Education: Completion of high school or High School Certificate of completion recognized in the State of Maryland.
Equivalency: Successful completion of one (1) year or more of college (full-time student status) may be substituted for the one (1) year of post High School full-time work experience. Excess work experience beyond the one (1) year requirement may not be substituted for the requirement of Completion of high school or High School Certificate of completion recognized in the State of Maryland. Article 41, Section 70B of the Annotated Code of Maryland established a Correctional Training Commission and gives the Commission authority to set minimum qualifications. On April 15, 1981, the Commission directed that before being selected for employment in a correctional unit, an applicant "... shall possess a High School diploma or a General Education Development Certificate recognized by the Maryland State Board of Education."
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:
Ability to acquire knowledge of the basic and standard principles, practices, rules and regulations pertaining to correctional work in a County correctional facility, including the supervision of inmates in a "direct supervision" environment.
Ability to acquire knowledge of the rules, regulations, and procedures pertaining to those posts to which assigned.
Ability to acquire knowledge of the techniques and practices associated with supervision of inmates in a direct supervision environment.
Ability to acquire understanding of the behavior patterns and attitudes of individuals in custody.
Ability to exercise good judgment in controlling offenders individually and in groups, some of whom may be emotionally or mentally disturbed or unruly.
Ability to acquire knowledge of operational aspects of security equipment/systems (e.g., radio transmitter and codes) and utilization of the computer to access information, e-mail, etc.
Ability to stand for long period of time under varying working conditions.
Ability to prepare brief written portions of reports summarizing facts related to inmate actions.
Ability to deal tactfully, effectively, and equitably with people.
Ability to report to work as ordered for emergencies and to meet operational staffing requirements.
Possession of a valid motor vehicle operator's license
CITIZENSHIP AND AGE:
Individuals appointed to this position must be at least 18 years of age on the date of appointment and be either a citizen of the United States or a resident alien.
Individuals appointed or promoted to a position in this class will be required to serve a probationary period of twelve months. Performance will be carefully evaluated during the probationary period. Continuation in this class will be contingent upon successful completion of the probationary period.
MEDICAL PROTOCOL: Core I Exam and Drug/Alcohol Screen
Class Established: July, 1979
Revised: January, 1982
October 1994 (M)