Monday, March 14, 2011

Failure rates high on the Texas prison guard career ladder

From our friends at Grits for Breakfast
Wednesday I mentioned that RIFs (reductions in force) among Texas prison guards could probably be accomplished through attrition instead of having to do actual "layoffs." Today let's look a little closer at the turnover rate among Texas correctional officers, as described in a report (not online) I received in an open records request from TDCJ called "FY 2010 Agency Turnover by Title.".

Here are the total number of Correctional Officer "separations" from TDCJ in FY 2010 for all reasons, along with the respective turnover rates for the employee classifications COs I-V that year.  

  • CO I: 478, 59.27%  
  • CO II: 1285, 50.61%  
  • CO III: 2,366, 28.14%  
  • CO IV: 814, 11.38% 
  •  CO V: 781, 8.42% 
At least three notable problems jump out: 


  1. No matter what the state does it's going to end with short staff, and people are going to get hurt because of it. People of the state of Texas love their laws, and law enforcement. If the people of the state want the criminals in the prisons well they are just going to have to pay for the staff to run the prisons. They can't expect "us" the CO's to assume the extra risks in addition to the plentiful ones already there just because they don't want to pay for the staff.

  2. I think if it was up to "the people" of Tx. we would have plenty of money and staff to run these prison's.I think it has to do with our law makers spending too much money on themselves,ie,big salaries,big homes,big cars,big vacations etc.

  3. Your are soooo right.

  4. Perry is the first in line with big expenditures. he should be living in a mobile home like the rest of the TDCJ personal does.

  5. i have personally worked at the french m robertson unit in abilene, which is a maximum security unit. i worked seg, and there they dont even have 3 officers assigned to a wing. they have 2. a picket officer and a rover. if anything goes down, that officer has to fend for himself till help arrives, and under those conditions, even 45 seconds is an eternity. i read the letter from that former styles unit officer, and i agree. too much work, not enough staff to handle it without cutting corners. im hoping that the bigwigs in tdcj, along with perry, and whoever else holds a seat of authority that has never set foot in a prison, will realize that the "overpaid babysitters" are in fact, overworked, endangered people trying to do a job with a dangerously low level of staff and funds. i pray that it doesnt take the death or injury of one more officer for em to figure it out. or the lawsuit that will inevitably go with it.