Merced Sun-Star — The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation officials announced this week the intent to hire close to 7,000 correctional officers over the next three years because of increased attrition rates.
According to the department, the current rate of attrition is approximately 1,800 annually, mostly due to retirement. In order to achieve the three-year goal, around 4,000 applications need to be submitted each month, said Greg Bergersen, Valley State Prison public information officer.
Valley State Prison, a men’s facility east of Chowchilla, is one of many prisons throughout the state that will be hiring. “In the next three years the department is really on a hiring need,” Bergersen said.
The last correctional peace officer recruitment campaign took place between 2006 and 2007. “Currently, we have a strong need for correctional officers to work in the Susanville area, which would be High Desert State Prison and the California Correctional Center, and Pelican Bay State Prison in Crescent City,” Bergersen said.
In the Valley, there are a number of prisons looking to hire, including Valley State Prison and the Central California Women’s Facility, also in Chowchilla. Other areas that have facilities are Stockton, Tracy, Coalinga, Corcoran and Avenal. There are 33 state adult prisons between the Mexican border and the Oregon border, Bergersen said.
“Due to prison expansion and the retirement age, we have a lot of individuals retiring,” Bergersen said, “and because the increase in bed space, we’re going to need more officers working at other facilities. So, therefore, there’s the need for the 7,000 correctional officers.” continue reading...