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Federal law enforcement agencies comparison

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  • #16
    I've seen a BPA switch over to US Probation. His motivation was to maintain work life balance and his 6c coverage. Good compensation, comp time; however, no over time pay. Also, after your probationary period, you can work from home several days out of the week. All of these benefits (pay, work life balance, etc) highly depends on the district; therefore research on the district should be done.


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    • #17
      Originally posted by AJW View Post
      Ladies/Gents,
      I am writing in question about comparable attributes of federal law enforcement agencies. (i.e. agency morale, overtime work/pay, career opportunities etc...) I am currently a newly hired Border Patrol Agent and am still in the hiring process with several other agencies, but wanted some collective information to make an informed decision before accepting any other position. (Primarily U.S. Marshals, ATF or DEA). I have a wife and infant, and I want the best overall situation for them as far as work is concerned. I would like to hear from agents in those law enforcement agencies, and Border Patrol Agents who have made the switch and their perspectives.

      I have only been with BP about a year, didn't get stuck in the worst of locations on the Southern Border and can always try to transfer closer to my hometown in Southern California. I originally joined to get my foot in the door because at the time my degree hadn't been completed, and I was transitioning from the military. I like the job a lot, but I always had my eyes on a couple other agencies. I have been told by other agents to try to get an 1811 gig early in my career (before hitting GS12) and having to start over as a trainee again (and complete another academy). And, I have heard that many agents who have left the patrol wish they could come back because of the "freedom" the patrol offers. I would just like to review pros and cons of other agencies before making further decisions.

      Border Patrol:

      Pros: Job in general (variety of work options), outdoors.

      Cons: BPAPRA, extra 25% of paycheck for 10 hour days (takes away from family time). Anything over 10 hours is comp time. Career mobility (border towns). Immigration Politics.

      Thanks for any information you can pass along.

      -A.
      The USMS, DEA, ATF, HSI are all 10 hour plus work days. The main difference with them is they are on LEAP so they only get paid for a 50 hour work week regardless if they work 50 or 75+ in a week. In the patrol you at least get comp time for anything over 50 in a week. I suggest you forget about federal LE altogether and get a job as a cop with a good local department. You will have FAR better work hours and quality of life as well as pay and retirement if you pick a good department. I've worked for two different federal agencies over the past decade plus now and I can tell you the smartest move you can make is to leave before you start collecting torn ACL and shoulder injuries in the Patrol. In general, working for the fed sucks and it gets worse every year.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by AJW View Post
        Ladies/Gents,
        I am writing in question about comparable attributes of federal law enforcement agencies. (i.e. agency morale, overtime work/pay, career opportunities etc...) I am currently a newly hired Border Patrol Agent and am still in the hiring process with several other agencies, but wanted some collective information to make an informed decision before accepting any other position. (Primarily U.S. Marshals, ATF or DEA). I have a wife and infant, and I want the best overall situation for them as far as work is concerned. I would like to hear from agents in those law enforcement agencies, and Border Patrol Agents who have made the switch and their perspectives.

        I have only been with BP about a year, didn't get stuck in the worst of locations on the Southern Border and can always try to transfer closer to my hometown in Southern California. I originally joined to get my foot in the door because at the time my degree hadn't been completed, and I was transitioning from the military. I like the job a lot, but I always had my eyes on a couple other agencies. I have been told by other agents to try to get an 1811 gig early in my career (before hitting GS12) and having to start over as a trainee again (and complete another academy). And, I have heard that many agents who have left the patrol wish they could come back because of the "freedom" the patrol offers. I would just like to review pros and cons of other agencies before making further decisions.

        Border Patrol:

        Pros: Job in general (variety of work options), outdoors.

        Cons: BPAPRA, extra 25% of paycheck for 10 hour days (takes away from family time). Anything over 10 hours is comp time. Career mobility (border towns). Immigration Politics.

        Thanks for any information you can pass along.

        -A.
        I can only give you a comparison of the three federal LE agencies and positions that I have worked

        BOP Correctional Officer
        Shift - 3 shifts, shifts are set for several months until the next bid
        Pay - Journeyman GL-7
        Overtime - LOTS!!!!! Some of it mandatory.
        Days off - Set for several months until the next bid, but include weekends and holidays
        Promotional/transfer potential - High. BOP promotes exclusively from within, so most higher level people started as COs, transfers are relatively common and easy
        Overall job satisfaction - About average.
        Training and detail opportunities - few and far between.
        My personal score on 1-10 scale - 5, mostly due to pay and job duties

        CBP Border Patrol Agent
        Shift - 3 shifts
        Pay - Journeyman GS-12
        Overtime - BPAPRA added 25% to pay, comp time, 50 hour work weeks
        Days off - Change every single pay period, and include weekends and holidays
        Promotional/transfer potential - Depends. If you were hired before the big hiring push of 2007-2011, then you are good, other wise you are fighting an uphill battle to get all but the worst locations.
        Overall job satisfaction - A little below average.
        Training and detail opportunities - few and far between.
        My personal score on 1-10 scale - 6, due to lack of transfer opportunities and terrible work locations

        ICE Deportation Officer
        Shift - 1 Shift, Days
        Pay - Journeyman GS-12
        Overtime - AUO adds up to 25% and FLSA to pay
        Days off - Weekends and holidays off for everyone
        Promotional/transfer potential - Decent. Swaps seem to be relatively common and accepted, but there are a lot of people trying to get home. In terms of promotions, there seems to be a lot of opportunities
        Overall job satisfaction - A little below average.
        Training and detail opportunities - Numerous and frequent.
        My personal score on 1-10 scale - 7, great schedule, great locations, but the work is probably the most boring of the three positions
        What is Perseverance?
        -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
        -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.
        -PERSEVERANCE IS TRYING AGAIN AND AGAIN.


        BOP - BPA - ICE

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