State Corrections Officials Face Dwindling Workforce

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(Sacramento, CA)
Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Corrections and Rehabilitation Secretary Rod Hickman characterizes the need for more employees as “very urgent.”  This year alone, 15-hundred will retire – many of those managers.  In fact, many state agencies are grappling with the issue of retiring baby boomers and retention problems. 

For the past several years, Caltrans has teamed up with Sacramento State’s college of continuing education to train future managers and administrators.  500 have graduated so far – and now Corrections is joining the program, too.  Hickman says they face the additional challenge of a troubled image: 

We have a unique environment that we work in with prisons and the perception of what we do, and I think that these types of programs help change that perception of what we do and that corrections is a good place to work.” 

Hickman acknowledges that working in the state’s prisons is a tough job – and says that leadership training will in the end, improve public safety.  The Department of Corrections has 59-thousand employees.