These are people who are responsible for overseeing individuals who have been arrested, those awaiting trials; those convicted of crimes and are sentenced to serve jail terms, penitentiary or reformatory. They are in charge of maintaining security, inmate accountability to prevent disturbances, assaults and escapes.
Factors affecting the demand and supply of correctional officers:-
Rise in prison population – correctional officers continue to be on high demand since there is increased need for jails and correction facilitates.
Training and other Qualifications – Most correctional institutes in the USA require officers to be between the age’s bracket 18-21 and of USA citizenship; an officer should be able to demonstrate job stability, by accumulating two years of work experience, should have had no felony convictions.
The officer should have met some standards of physical fitness and proper hearing and seeing ability. By setting these kinds of requirements, the supply becomes low as compared to the rising demand.
Salaries – ‘in the past some local and state corrections agencies have expressed difficulties in attracting and keeping qualified applicants, largely due to low salaries and concentration of jobs in rural locations’
Safety and risks involved – there are some risks that are related to this professional as opposed to others. Here the officers are dealing with hard people, sometimes hard core criminals who are not fit to stay in the society and therefore this poses the officers to insecurity and risks.
Psychological stress – the nature of this kind of work has its challenges and stresses. Sometimes there is bad language and even false accusations from the inmates regarding the officers something that can be stressing so much before investigations are carried out. This will affect demand and supply in that some people will just not want to be associated with such stress and therefore will not even enroll as correctional officers.
The societal approach to this kind of job – it is not so well looked at by the society in general and this comes with its negative effects; affecting the supply and demand.
The way a correction officer’s salary is reached at and the structure of it
I will display the SCAAP payment formulae here for this question
Use of financial data the applicants supplied via GMS, per diem rate is calculated for each jurisdiction. In particular a rate is determined using each applicant’s yearly correctional officer salary and the total number of all inmate days.
ICE analyzes the inmate records and provides BJA with a data report that delineates each number of eligible, unknown, and invalid inmates each category representing number of inmates.
Each jurisdiction total eligible inmate days and the percentage of the unknown days are totaled and then multiplied by the applicants per diem rate to reach the total salary of the officer.
The value of each applicant correctional officer salary costs associated with its eligible unknown inmate days and then the total got. The total reflects the relationship between total, all applicant eligible salary cost and the programme’s yearly appropriation, the Financial year 2005 the factor used was 33.52
Below is the structure of this
Applicant total all inmate Days = Daily cost per inmate
Per Diem times Illegal days = Cost of illegal inmates days
Per Diem X unknown inmate Days X percentage based on type of jurisdiction = cost of unknown inmates
4 Cost for illegal Inmate Days + cost for unknown inmate
Days = salary costs for all Illegal Inmates Days.
5 Financial Year 2005 SCAAP payment
Ratio 33.52% of salary costs for
All illegal inmate days = 2005 SCAAP payment Amount.
Site used to get the above information is http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/BJA/grant/2005SCAAPExplain.pdf
My suggestion on how the supply of correctional officers can be increased.
Review the structure of payment and salaries for the officers. I think it should be reviewed and that these officers should be paid like any other government employee without having to relate their salaries with the inmates and that kind of a thing.
I think there should be increased training and the recruitment process be made more lenient such that even other nationalities living in the USA can take up these jobs especially if someone is really interested and they qualify in all other areas just missing the citizenship area.
I also think that officers should be given full protection from the rough inmates and that they should be assured of 100% safety throughout their working periods and even there after.
I think it could be important if during the training received by the officers there is a psychological education so be aware of what to expect while at work and how to cope with this.(am not sure if this is part of the study for this job am just airing my personal views.