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Just starting out

 

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Male user RonJr1970 8 posts

Thanks Mudflap…appreciate it!

 
Buckeye flag Mudflap 293 posts

Hey Ron. Mick’s pretty sharp.

Welcome to the zoo.

 
Male user RonJr1970 8 posts

Excellent info Mick. Your saying basially the same thing that my instructors are…THAT is nice for new folks to see and get the idea that we are ALL on basically the same page no matter where we work.

 
Riot helmet Mick 307 posts

Just remember they will know you are new just by the way you carry yourself and act so don’t try and pretend any different. What you are learning now in the Academy is mostly procedure. The real learning begins when you walk through those gates for the first time. Watch and listen to the experienced Officers. On the whole they won’t put you wrong.
Although a lot of the inmates may lack a formal education they have been through the University of the Survival of the most Vicious. They would have Phd’s in manipulation and inventiveness. Assume they are lying to you unless you know or they can prove otherwise because 90% of the time they are.
Firm but Fair is the way to go. And the most important word you are going to learn is NO. Don’t be afraid to use it regularly and often. Remember they will call you names, curse you and at times attack you but at the end of the day the need you for everything. And that gives you a lot of power. The ability to deny them those little things they class as luxuries.
Many years ago I watched a movie where a group of young Marines were taught this Prayer. “Though we shall walk trough the valley of shadow we shall fear no evil. Because we are the Biggest,Baddest,Meanest, Mother f*****’s in the valley”. This is what you tell yourself when you feel like they are trying to intimidate you.

 
Male user RonJr1970 8 posts

Thanks Mick…I appreciate the reply.

 
Riot helmet Mick 307 posts

Prison slang is like a language with several different dialects. Each area would have it’s own terms. What we would refer to as a “Shiv” (Home made stabbing/cutting weapon) others would call a “Shank”. What we would call “Hooch” others would call “Pruno”. So you get my meaning. I am sure if we have an Officer from Nebraska He/She can answer your question a little better.

 
Male user RonJr1970 8 posts

Good day all. Im new to Corrections, new to this site and thankfull that I have found it. I’m working for the State of Nebraska and as a midlife career change, am finding this to be quite a challenging career (so far). I’m in my 3 rd week at the academy and have learned SO much, it’s incredible. All of your informative comments are TRULY appreciated by this new officer!
I will throw out one question to the group. I’m sure I will learn this over time but any “head start” info would be appreciated.
Prison “slang” ? What are some phrases or words new officers should learn and remember early in their career ?

 
Female user DATS168 8 posts

Congratulations! I am sure you are learning a lot. I am a drug and alcohol counselorin a correctional setting, and have a lot of respect for corrections officers. The female COs have challenges that the males don’t necessarily have, but good for you! I have seen some female COs who are very good at what they do.

 
Female user DATS168 8 posts

Congratulations! I am sure you are learning a lot. I am a drug and alcohol counselorin a correctional setting, and have a lot of respect for corrections officers. The female COs have challenges that the males don’t necessarily have, but good for you! I have seen some female COs who are very good at what they do.

 
Female user Tery 2 posts

Hello all from sunny Florida. I am half way done with The Academy, we start fire arms on Tuesday ( woohoo!). I have to say that I am most impressed with this site and the majority of people posting. Makes me feel good about who I may end up working next to in the future. I have been scouring the net to find sites like this to share with my Classmates. Information is gold! And learning comes from all directions. I look forward to talking with you all in the future.

 
100 5886 Sarge276 45 posts

Mary, welcome to the mix. Your input is just as valuable as any of ours. I also wouldn’t mind having tazers. All we get here is pepper spray, which can be messy and tends to debilitate officers and other inmates as much as, if not more than, the subject we’re trying to subdue. I thank God I haven’t had to use it yet. Just the presence of it has been a pretty good deterrent. Most cuff up when they see we’re about to use it. As far as college, most of us don’t have degrees and the ones who do usually got them after they entered the field as a means to better their chances for advancement.
As far as any thoughts on stopping the madness, I don’t envy you. We all know that juveniles tend to be less rational than adults, but I still think the best weapon is good communication skills. However, anyone who’s been in any corrections job for any length of time knows that verbal tactics don’t always work and the legislators don’t take into account when making laws that rebellious teens, altho psychologically are still children, physically are often just as strong and skilled (often more so) as adults. Know your DT and talk to your administration about the problem and see if there are maybe some less lethal aids that can help you with unruly teens without violating their precious rights.

 
Flag shakey 191 posts

I work for the State of Ohio at the adult level and yes we do have it easier (I thin) than the Juvenile officers. But you are not in the wrong chat room and welcome to the show…:)

 
Female user mary 2 posts

you know what, I am totally in the wrong chat room…you guys seem to have it all together, and we are just struggling to contol the population that you will all have in a couple years….kudos to you and remember us in the trenches who got shit while you were in college…

 
Female user mary 2 posts

having worked in a juvenile correctional facility for two years, I do applaud all of you, but I can’t see eye to eye with any of youl, you get to have weapons, and if you hit back, you can always say it was the perps fault. I am not allowed to hit back, at all, that would be “child abuse”, and so get hit punched , kicked, bit, etc. on a regular basis. most of my kids are bigger than me, by a long shot. i have three boys over 6’3" in my classroom, and while I am trained to put them down, and I am a little 5’4" woman. I wish I had the means you had to subdue people, but I just have myself, and my wits, to keep it together. I think that in our situation, we need tazers, or something, to stop the madness! Any thoughts?

 
Female user DATS168 8 posts

Okay- you’ve been in the job almost a year… how is it going? What are the most important things you’ve learned in the past year?

 
Male user 125.25 16 posts

Your thank you sounds sincere and these men and woman have many good advise for you, I wish you the best of luck,This may sound strange to you but here goes, the inmates will teach you the job, in your stiff suit until you learn you will be mr by the book and you will see in time the book will be more relaxed in order to work efficiently around inmates, co workers and stupidvisors. If you have a little street savy and some common sense you will do just fine in all your endeavors.

 
Male user Steelheader 2 posts

I’m new on this forum. I have been in Corrections for 5 years. It’s a great job. Your about to begin a new life and be in the best brotherhood you will ever discover. Remember your policy and procedure and you will do great. Suck up everything you can from your experienced co workers or FTO’s. In under a year you’re going to see and learn things that you could have probably never made up or imagined in your life. Some funny things and some not so pleasant things, it comes with the job. FYI I’m sure you have written by know, if not use what you learned in school. I had a Sgt who drew on my first reports with that magical red pen. It was still in 3rd grade all over again. Welcome and best of luck to you brother!

 
Male user Hoffstyle 2 posts

Never tell an inmate your 1st name. When they ask, say “Sir or Officer”

Do not tell them where you used to work, or any information about your personal life. If they ask if you are married or whatever, politely explain to them that your business is not a matter of discussion and end the conversation.

Very Important!! If an inmate spends longer than 30 seconds talking to you, something is going on. End the conversation, especially in a living unit. Start doing rounds IMMEDIATELY.

Never conduct rounds in the same manner. Mix it up. Turn your radio down and use key holders so they do not hear keys.

I will repeat the information on desks thing: They read upside down really well.

Never demean, ridicule, or disrespect an inmate. ALWAYS say no, being overridden is better than having a Supervisor make you take back your word. Stay out of the investigators office if you can avoid it. Keep your grievances to a minimum if you can. If you get a mess of them at one time, there is a reason for it. Do everything you can to avoid it. Don’t be a puss about being Firm Fair and Consistent. FF&C will save your butt every time.

Inmates know the rules better than you. Learn the inmate rulebook paragraph by paragraph.

But the most important advise I can give a new officer is this: If the hair on the back of your kneck stands up, or you have a “funny feeling” something is not right or things are out of place they probably are. DO NOT look distressed, just start keeping an active eye out. There are times when your loud pod will get suddenly quiet or inmates start requesting housing unit changes in masse and things like that. Those are overt warning signs. But if your internal radar goes off, learn to listen to it. Eventually it will fine tune itself.

 
Male user drjohnjv 1 post

We must also pay attention to the inmate and material on a desk – inmates learn to read upside down and often we do not cover up or protect important memorandum. You have to be so totally astute to avoid giving sensitive information to inmates. They are always seeking and their hearing has intensified greatly. It is an ongoing situation that needs reminders frequently at briefings and roll call.

 
Riot helmet Mick 307 posts

Another one is

6. " Eyes and Ears open. Mouth shut."

Never ever discuss anything of a personal or operational nature in hearing range of any inmate. They are very good at picking up tit bits of info from non thinking Officers. But conversely try and listen in on their coversations and an eye on what they are up to.

 
Flag shakey 191 posts

Oh, I for got another one

5. Learn to spell right, just look at my posts…well….you get the picture..:)

 
Male user New2Corrections 10 posts

Thanks for the congrats and the words of wisdom. On my first day, my favorite word was “no”, because the inmates were really trying to test me and my knowledge. I just stuck to the letter of the law (no pun intended). I also noticed that there is a lot of “gray area” where personal improvisation is key. Thanks again all!

 
Flag shakey 191 posts

Words of wisdom, OK A few words them here goes the skinny

1. Keys, they serve a purpose, Keeps all doors locked that should be locked. see very simple on that topic.

2. When in doubt, say “NO”. it’s a lot easier to change a NO to a YES, than the other way around.

3. Under no circumtance, leave your partner, because most likly you are all each other have untill help arrives.

4. Most important of all is to make it home safe and leave job on the porch, never bring into the house. We don’t need to
be telling our loved ones what goes on behind the walls, they worry enough as it is.

All the rest is called the gray area to improvise as seen fit to make the obove work.
This is just my way, you’ll find what works for you as you progress. weclome aboard CO.

 
Buckeye flag Mudflap 293 posts

Congrats!

 
Male user New2Corrections 10 posts

Well…I just graduated the academy and I start on line tomorrow. Hello new career!

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