As part of its campaign to increase the number of correctional facilities in Ontario, the Ford government has added 99 new prison officers to the system following their graduation from a training program that took place virtually and in-person for eight weeks with, according to the Office of the Solicitor General, “a focus on enhanced communication and de-escalation skills. It also included a focus on anti-Black racism, Indigenous cultural training and inmate management techniques”.
The 8-week training will, says Solicitor General, Sylvia Jones, give them “a rewarding career in public service” and “ensure they are well prepared and equipped to make important contributions to the communities they serve.”
16 of the latest batch of graduates will be assigned to the Eastern Ontario Region at the Central East Correctional Centre, Ottawa-Carleton Detention Centre, Brockville Jail, St. Lawrence Valley Correctional & Treatment Centre, and Quinte Detention Centre.
About a third of the others will work in the Toronto Region, with the remainder spread throughout the rest of the Province.
It is difficult to assess the quality or depth of the training these new graduates received in eight weeks, but the Government noted that they “received compensation from the Province while undergoing training to help remove barriers to employment”.