A juvenile justice detention officer is responsible for the welfare and safety of juvenile delinquents in facilities dedicated to their care. These individuals have a tough job where they have to constantly keep a watch on their wards, ensuring that no untoward incidents transpire, and to handle these incidents when and if they do happen.
Eligibility criteria to work as a juvenile justice detention officer include a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, corrections or law enforcement, along with good physical condition. At this position, you will be constantly in touch with young offenders who may be a threat to the society, and it will be your responsibility to ensure that they do not make a move that disturbs the community. In essence, you will be looking at and gauging their every move, making sure that they remain within the limitations that are set by the authorities.
As a juvenile justice detention officer, you may come across many incidents when your communication skills will come into play. You may have to provide counseling to young offenders who have been segregated for punitive, protective and administrative purposes. Additionally, you will provide counseling to them to make sure that their compliance remains within the established terms of behavior standards.
Here is a list of duties that you will be performing in this position:
Juvenile Justice Officer Job Description
• Provide security and care to young offenders through thorough and intense supervision
• Ascertain that assigned housing units and dormitories are safe and secure, and that all recreational rooms and counseling areas are conducive to assigned wards’ wellbeing
• Maintain order by modeling good behavior and /or providing information on what behavior models to follow
• Enforce detention facility rules and regulations and ensure that they are strictly followed by wards
• Induct new young offenders by searching, booking, fingerprinting and photographing them upon arrival
• Record and store young offenders’ personal properties and ensure that any dangerous items are confiscated
• Facilitate appropriate contact between offenders, the community and family members by ensuring that all established protocols are followed
• Conduct random cell searches to ensure control and discipline for security purposes
• Create, maintain and update offenders’ records on a regular basis and ensure that any special information is provided to the assigned probation officer
• Monitor offenders during court appearances, hospital appointments and recreational activities
• Draft weekly reports on each assigned offender, documenting important incidents and issues, and collect items as evidence
• Counsel young juveniles to assist them in becoming less hostile and more contributory to the community