With less than three months until builders hand over the keys to British Columbia’s newest correctional centre, hiring is on track, with approximately 190 positions filled – from correctional officer and administrative support roles to the warden’s chair.
Those hired to date include:
- One warden and three deputy wardens, who are currently on staff.
- Nine assistant deputy wardens and one warden’s assistant, with start dates in early fiscal 2016-17.
- 25 correctional supervisors, with start dates in late 2016.
- Individuals in a number of supporting roles, such as the director of business and finance, a stock worker, a purchasing officer, six administrative assistants and three instructors.
- 130 of 200 correctional officers, with hiring of the remainder ongoing.
Two final information sessions for those interested in correctional officer positions at Okanagan Correctional Centre (OCC) will take place:
- In Kelowna: July 9, 2016, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Kelowna Justice Institute, 825 Walrod St.
- In Penticton: July 17, 2016, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Penticton Days Inn, 152 Riverside Dr.
BC Corrections began recruiting in 2015, encouraging local residents to consider new career possibilities and inviting existing correctional officers to transfer to the Okanagan. To date, more than 1,000 prospective staff have taken part in information sessions throughout the region, learning about BC Corrections, the inmate population and the responsibilities of a correctional officer.
As well, more than 400 of these prospective staff have completed the Corrections Officer’s Physical Abilities Test (COPAT). This test, a requirement of applying for a correctional officer position, assesses whether someone can meet the physical demands of the job.
In all, BC Corrections has been working to fill 240 correctional staff positions and 60 support staff roles.
Mike Morris, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General –
“Timely hiring is critical as we prepare to move from construction to operation of the new centre. Fortunately, many interested locals are showing they have the right stuff – like compassion, good communication skills, the ability to work as part of a team and a strong desire to help inmates make better choices. In the months ahead, we’ll continue selecting and training new officers and staff to work alongside seasoned BC Corrections employees, to ensure a safe environment at OCC and a strong focus on preparing inmates for crime-free futures.”
Linda Larson, MLA, Boundary-Similkameen –
“From a local employment perspective, OCC is the gift that keeps on giving. While related construction jobs begin to wind down, hundreds of long-term, well-paying jobs are being filled, bringing an additional, major source of stable employment to our region.”
Ron Hovanes, mayor, Town of Oliver –
“The continued diversification of our local economy owes much to the vision and business development efforts of the Osoyoos Indian Band. By working with the Province to secure the Okanagan Correctional Centre as an anchor tenant for its Senkulmen Enterprise Centre, the band is also helping to bring new families to our town, benefiting everyone from local grocers to property sellers. Greater economic diversity will also benefit other support services, such as South Okanagan General Hospital and the education system.”
Clarence Louie, Chief, Osoyoos Indian Band –
“The fact that both construction and staffing are progressing toward completion for the Okanagan Correctional Centre is welcome news. As a major employer in the region, we are pleased to be involved in yet another project that is creating significant, well-paying jobs for people in the South Okanagan.”
- The OCC project remains on budget and on time, with construction expected to be complete by the end of September 2016. System testing and staff familiarization will follow, with inmates moving into the new centre in 2017.
- With 378 cells, OCC represents about half of the almost 800 cells BC Corrections will have added since 2008 under the largest capital expansion plan in its history.
- OCC is already a strong economic driver for the South Okanagan, having created an estimated 500 direct and 500 indirect jobs during construction.
- Maximizing energy efficiency and the use of B.C. lumber products has been a goal during construction, with OCC designed to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification and using wood in accordance with the B.C. Building Code and in keeping with government’s Wood First Act.
Hiring information session poster: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/BC_Corrections_Poster.pdf
The MyHR BC Corrections page: http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/careers-myhr/job-seekers/featured-careers/bc-corrections
Corrections Officer’s Physical Abilities Test details: http://www2.gov.bc.ca/local/myhr/documents/jobs_hiring/corrections_physical_abilities_test.pdf
The Justice Institute of BC: www.jibc.ca