Probation Officer Career in Alameda County, California

Alameda County includes 1,510,271 residents of the East San Francisco Bay region. The probation department staff of 579 includes 447 sworn peace officers who work in the main Oakland office and other sites in Oakland, Hayward, Pleasanton and San Leandro.  Since 1903, when the first Alameda probation office served 113 juveniles and 45 “culprits over 16 years of age,” the caseload has expanded to 1,917 juveniles and 14,500 adults.

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Alameda County Probation Department Task Forces

Chief Harris emphasizes the commitment to “ongoing reform and development through collaboration with county and community partners.”  To forward this goal many POs serve on these task forces in collaboration with members of other law enforcement agencies:

  • Alameda County Narcotics Task Force
  • Sexual Assault Felony Enforcement Task Force
  • Alameda County Regional Auto Theft Task Force
  • Gang Violence Suppression Task Force
  • Police and Correctional Team

Qualifications for Probation Officer in Alameda County & How to Apply

All Alameda County probation officer jobs are filled using a merit-oriented Civil Service Selection System based on advancement of the best qualified. Applications for deputy probation officer are only accepted online and only when there is an open position. Interested persons should go to the Alameda County Human Resources Employment Center website to check for openings or to request notification of desired openings. Basic qualifications for Deputy Probation Officer I (entry level) are:

  • U.S. Citizen over the age of 21
  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited four-year college/university
  • California driver’s license
  • Excellent oral/written communication skills
  • Good decision-making and organizational abilities
  • Positive attitude
  • Resilient and ability to handle stressful situations and competing roles
  • Highest ethical standards
  • Willing to work weekends, nights and on holidays

Hiring Process for Alameda County Deputy Probation Officer

Persons with accepted applications are sent e-mails denoting the date/time/place of a written examination administered by the Human Resources Department. A study guide for the general knowledge test is available. Candidates with the highest scores are referred to the probation department for a personal interview, physical and psychological examinations, background check and fingerprinting.

New hires have 18 months of on-the-job training and must successfully pass the Basic Probation Officer Training Course before effectively becoming a Deputy Probation Officer II.

The average monthly salary for Deputy Probation Officer I is $4,784-$5,843.

Alameda County Probation Department Adult Services

Under the supervision of Chief Probation Officer LaDonna Harris, probation officer (POs) jobs in Alameda County involve providing the following adult services:

  • Adult Investigations. Evaluate offenders in order to help judges decide upon the most appropriate sentences. Consideration is given to defendant’s criminal/social history, victim loss and public safety.
  • Court Officers. POs serve as liaisons between the probation department and the courts by representing the Department in all probation matters, screening and scheduling petitions, presenting recommendations and recording court orders.
  • Adult Supervision. Provide various levels of offender supervision as determined by the Adult Services Classification System which focuses on the balance between probationer rehabilitation and public safety.
  • Specialized Caseloads. Some POs opt to receive extensive training to work with three specialized caseloads: high-risk, domestic violence and sex offenders. They work in collaboration with local law enforcement and community organizations in order to reduce recidivism and substance abuse while protecting the community. These offenders receive the maximum level of supervision. High-risk offenders in Alameda County are primarily males between the ages of 18-24 who live in zip code areas noted for gangs and high crime levels.

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