Twenty-two trainee correctional officers celebrated a new chapter in their careers today at a swearing-in ceremony at Parklea Correctional Centre.
Parklea Governor Paul Baker said it was an exciting day for the 16 men and six women who had worked hard to complete rigorous practical and theoretical training.
“Our new trainees have achieved a significant goal in their correctional careers, and I congratulate them on making it through the course,” Mr Baker said.
“Being a correctional officer is not for everyone – it can be a challenging career but also rewarding for people who want to make a difference to inmates’ lives.
“Our mission at Parklea is to run a safe and secure prison, where inmates are treated with decency and respect. We work to reduce reoffending and take care of staff.”
The new officers range in age from 21 to 50 and have diverse employment histories and cultural backgrounds.
Trainees studied subjects such as legislation, policies and procedures, de-escalation and use of force tactics, mental health and general first aid. They also take part in simulated search and emergency response exercises, as well as weapons training.
“This training provides them with knowledge and values they need to safely and professionally respond to a variety of situations and work with a diverse group of people,” Mr Baker said.
“I’m delighted to welcome our new officers into our ranks and I look forward to working with them at Parklea.”
The event was attended by the Minister for Corrections Geoff Lee, who presented graduates with certificates for completing the 10-week Initial Training Course to become trainee correctional officers.
“Today’s graduates join more than 10,000 people who work in correctional facilities and community corrections across the state,” Mr Lee said.
“Corrections staff work tirelessly to ensure offenders have access to the tools for rehabilitation, including employment, vocational training, personal development programs, education and other interventions.
“They are frontline workers and deserve recognition for the important and sometimes dangerous work they do out of the public eye to keep our communities safe.
“I wish the graduates a long and successful career in corrections and hope they positively impact inmates lives.”
Member for Riverstone Kevin Conolly welcomed the graduates to the area.
“Parklea Correctional Centre is a proud employer for our electorate and I’m thrilled to see these graduates embrace opportunities here,” Mr Conolly said.
Trainees will complete 12-months on-the-job assessments to attain their Certificate III in Correctional Practice.
This is the ninth graduating class since MTC Australia began operating Parklea Correctional Centre on behalf of Corrective Services NSW in 2019.
Awards were given at the ceremony for collaboration, safety, decency, security, challenge, ingenuity and The Parklea Way.