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Detention Officer for juveniles

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  • Detention Officer for juveniles

    Having a hard time finding a place pertaining to DO's so I'm hoping this is a decent place to go...

    I've been a DO for a month or so now. I want to eventually work for the sheriffs dept so I am basically using this as a stepping stone until I graduate from college...

    I have to admit though, I'm kind of having a hard time adjusting from retail to dealing with juveniles at the jail! I am not a rule bender/breaker and I follow the rules and use discretion when necessary. Because of this, the kids are not wanting to respect me. Currently our juvenile detention facility is making many changes with the new administration. They are wanting us to be tougher on the rules and with following them, which I have NO problem with. But because these kids have been allowed to basically run the jail they have a big issue with someone like me who doesn't play and isn't there to be their friend. I am trying to get a good rapport with them at the same time enforcing the rules... any suggestions? Not going to lie, I am frustrated..

  • #2
    I've worked in adult corrections for 7 years. I would much rather work with adults than kids so I commend you for doing what you do. Working with kids is tough. Kids act on impulse which makes it an even more unpredictable environment.

    One of the things I always told newer officers was always be consistent. You can be a hard *** or a softy, but keep it consistent.

    Your job is to enforce the rules. The kids aren't going to like it for obvious reason but who gives a crap. They aren't there for jaywalking. Building rapport doesn't come at the expense of enforcing rules. Stand tall, call them on their crap but be professional (unless they act a fool). Do this consistently and with confidence. You may not have rapport but you will have respect.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by CarRamRod View Post
      One of the things I always told newer officers was always be consistent. You can be a hard *** or a softy, but keep it consistent.

      Your job is to enforce the rules. The kids aren't going to like it for obvious reason but who gives a crap. They aren't there for jaywalking. Building rapport doesn't come at the expense of enforcing rules. Stand tall, call them on their crap but be professional (unless they act a fool). Do this consistently and with confidence. You may not have rapport but you will have respect.
      Re-read this a few times

      Follow the directions from your administration and try to show a team approach to "retaking" the facility from the juveniles. Firm, fair, consistent and don't let them back you down.
      Since some people need to be told by notes in crayon .......Don't PM me with without prior permission. If you can't discuss the situation in the open forum ----it must not be that important

      My new word for the day is FOCUS, when someone irritates you tell them to FOCUS

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      • #4
        The best part of your post is that you said your administration is making a change to be tougher. That's very good news and you and your peers should appreciate that. There's two ways to run a facility, admin way or law enforcement way. Those of us that have been in the profession prefer the LE way. Inmates, regardless of age, do not get to run the facility. Remember, it's our house. It's great that your admin is changing toward that attitude.

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        • #5
          Ive had to haul a few of mommas good children when they were so screwed up the juvenile officers couldnt control them in court by themselves.I feel for you and dont think i could work with the kids at this point in my life.

          Always remember tho, They wont stay with you forever,We will get them soon enough and our act right and what you get to do is alittle more hands on.

          Last one was silent the entire hour ride, as soon as we got their he went into his bad boy act with the juvenile officers,as soon as i asked them just how old this kid was,they stated almost 17.I told them just to hang in there.He would be our guest and we would assist his attitude real soon,he looked at me and never said another word while i was there.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Iowa #1603 View Post
            Re-read this a few times

            Follow the directions from your administration and try to show a team approach to "retaking" the facility from the juveniles. Firm, fair, consistent and don't let them back you down.
            This. If inmates LIKE the way I do my job, I'm doing it wrong. Way wrong.

            The kids have counselors and whatnot to be friends with.

            Be firm, be fair, be consistent... most will come to respect that even if they don't like it, and if they don't like it they can lump it.

            ...and yeah, I wouldn't work with kids for all the tea in China.
            "I am a Soldier. I fight where I'm told and I win where I fight." -- GEN George S. Patton, Jr.

            "With a brother on my left and a sister on my right, we face…. We face what no one should face. We face, so no one else would face. We are in the face of Death." -- Holli Peet

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