According to a statement from the Ontario government, the province has bolstered its correctional system adding 96 new correctional officers, who have all completed the Corrections Foundational Training program.
“Correctional officers are critical partners in Ontario’s justice system. The comprehensive training these professionals have received will ensure communities across the province are supported and protected,” said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones in a statement. “I would like to commend the graduates for their hard work and commitment to public service.”
Recruits received training in a variety of disciplines, including enhanced communication skills, de-escalation skills, anti-Black racism and Indigenous cultural training and inmate management techniques. The training program was conducted over eight weeks both virtually and in-person. The Regional Intermittent Centre in London, Ont., was utilized to teach practical training elements. Two cohorts completed training this summer.
Ontario launched a pilot project in partnership with Mohawk College offering the Corrections Foundational Training program via virtual learning.
The graduates will be assigned to 15 institutions across Ontario:
• 15 graduates will support the Eastern Region at the Central East Correctional Centre, Ottawa-Carleton Detention Centre, Brockville Jail, St. Lawrence Valley Correctional & Treatment Centre and Quinte Detention Centre.
• 19 will support the Western Region at the Central North Correctional Centre, Elgin-Middlesex Detention Centre, Stratford Jail and Sarnia Jail.
• Eight graduates will work in the Northern Region at the North Bay Jail, Sudbury Jail and Monteith Correctional Complex.
• 34 will work in the Toronto Region at Toronto East Detention Centre and Toronto South Detention Centre.
• 20 graduates will support the Central Region at the Maplehurst Correctional Complex and Hamilton-Wentworth Detention Centre.
According to the provincial government, it has invested more than $500 million over five years to transform adult correctional services and improve public safety. To support this commitment, the province provided recent graduates with compensation while undergoing training to help remove barriers to employment.
Last year, Ontario said its investment will support the hiring of more than 500 new staff to help address challenges within the correctional system such as mental health and addiction issues. The additional funding will also be used to modernize outdated infrastructure to address overcrowding and to improve services.
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