Conducting surveillance and making unannounced visits are just some of the actions Bridgeport juvenile probation officers take to ensure public safety and provide justice for the victims of crime. Officers also provide supervision and guidance for evidence-based rehabilitation and sentencing programs that are proven to reduce the rate of juvenile recidivism and promote community engagement.
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One such example is Bridgeport’s juvenile offender mediation program in which probation officers assist in an ameliorative procedure that allows a young offender to meet his or her victims and participate in an atonement process that allows criminal charges to be expunged. The rate of recidivism for teens that participated in this program more than halved compared with those who did not, with juvenile probation officers playing a key role.
Required Education for Bridgeport Juvenile Probation Officers
Jobs in juvenile probation at times require an officer to make calculated and intelligent split-second decisions while in other instances to come up with long-term creative solutions for persistent conundrums. This necessitates a certain level of skill and knowledge, translated by the hiring agency for officers – the State Judicial Branch – into an education requirement for all candidates hoping to make their careers as juvenile probation officers in Bridgeport. The State Judiciary prefers all juvenile probation candidates to have at least a bachelor’s degree in any subject, including:
- Criminal Justice
- Social Work
Gained knowledge and relevant experience is also valued, including in areas such as:
- Juvenile corrections
- Mental health and substance abuse counseling
- Bridgeport community resources
- Youth leadership programs
How to Become a Juvenile Probation Officer in Bridgeport
Becoming a juvenile probation officer in Bridgeport involves first successfully making it through the application process, being hired, and finally the completion of an extensive training program. Applications can be made by following the instructions listed on advertised juvenile probation officer positions that can be found on the State Judicial Branch’s jobs website. Competitive candidates will be notified and may be eligible to continue with an interview, background check, medical examination, and drug test.
After being hired into their new careers, juvenile probation officers will complete a comprehensive training program that involves 440 hours over the course of 11 weeks spent on subjects such as:
- Intake interviews and the assessment of offenders for risks posed by and to them
- Interviewing techniques for the purpose of establishing working relationships, gaining trust, and information
- Preparation of reports based on interviews and research for assessment and presentation to the court
- Self-defense, restraint, and arrest techniques
- Treatment resources and options
After their first year of employment, officers are required to complete 40 hours of continuing training annually to stay up to date on the current evidence-based strategies and procedures the Bridgeport Juvenile Probation Division has identified as effective.