Seven New Correctional Officers Graduate in the North
Frontline Workers will Increase Public Safety in Northern Ontario Communities
Thunder Bay - Ontario continues to create a safer adult correctional system by hiring seven new correctional officer graduates in the North. The new staff represent the latest action to improve Ontario's corrections system, with a focus on staff well-being and public safety.
"Correctional officers are essential partners in Ontario's justice system," said Sylvia Jones, Solicitor General. "They provide a vital service that directly impacts community safety across the province. I would like to congratulate every graduate for their hard work and commitment."
Graduates have successfully completed the Correctional Officer Training and Assessment (COTA) program - a comprehensive eight-week program that includes mental health training, Indigenous cultural training, inmate management techniques and ongoing training and job coaching following deployment.
Today's graduating class is part of COTA North. These correctional officers come from communities in the North, were trained in the North and will be assigned to three Northern Ontario institutions - the Thunder Bay Jail, the Thunder Bay Correctional Centre, and the Kenora Jail. This program ensures that frontline officers reflect the communities they serve and offer a local perspective on the unique challenges of each facility.
"Correctional officers across the province provide essential services that uphold our justice system, and I am very proud to see seven new correctional officer graduates from COTA to serve our Northern communities," said Greg Rickford, Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, and Indigenous Affairs. "We face unique challenges in the North and I'd like to express our gratitude for the hard work these officers have put in and thank them for their service to the people of Ontario."
"We are committed to the rehabilitation of those in our custody in an effort to reduce future crime, as well as ensuring our staff are safe and supported on the job. Hiring additional correctional officers makes our institutions safer," said Jones.
Recent government action to support correctional officers in the North includes:
- Better health and wellness supports for correctional officers
- Committing to build a new, modern correctional complex in Thunder Bay
- Expanding the female unit at Monteith Correctional Complex
- Increasing safety at the Kenora Jail by upgrading infrastructure and strengthening partnerships between corrections staff and police services.