All-Female Prison Squad Completes Tactical Training

Corrections Victoria’s new all-female prison officer squad has completed tactical training and will soon start work in the women’s prison system, helping to keep the community safe.

Minister for Corrections Ben Carroll and Corrections Commissioner Emma Cassar visited the 29-member squad as they were put through their paces during tactical training in Hoppers Crossing.

Tactical training gives the recruits the critical communication skills and response strategies they need to respond to incidents in our prisons.

The session is part of the Escort Officer Qualification training, where the squad was taught the advanced techniques needed to manage potentially complex incidents in prisons or while providing prisoner escorts.

The new squad includes women from a diverse mix of professional backgrounds, including an egg farmer, medic, singer, Disney World team member and a braille producer.

The recruits will graduate this Friday, and will then be deployed to the state’s maximum-security women’s prison, the Dame Phyllis Frost Centre.

Across Victoria’s prisons, around 30 per cent of prison officers are women, while women make up almost 60 per cent of staff at the Dame Phyllis Frost Centre.

The all-female squad is part of Corrections Victoria’s push to hire more female prison officers. The first all-female recruitment campaign attracted more than 900 applications for the 29-member squad.

Being a prison officer can lead to a range of senior officer roles and provides pathways to work in various specialist areas including prison industries, security and intelligence and emergency response.

Since 1 July 2015, about 1500 new entry-level prison officers have joined Victoria’s public prison system.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Corrections Ben Carroll

“A prison officer does a lot more than just guard prisoners, they’re social workers, they’re teachers and they’re highly trained in tactical response – playing a vital role in preventing reoffending and improving community safety.”

“Our corrections officers go through extensive training so they’re ready to handle anything that might be thrown their way in a job where no two days are the same.”

Quotes attributable to Corrections Victoria Commissioner Emma Cassar

“A career as a prison officer is incredibly rewarding, as you have an opportunity to turn around people’s lives and contribute to a safer Victorian community.”

“The new recruits demonstrate all the qualities needed to work in our corrections system, and I wish them all the best in their future careers.”

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