Published: 14:51, 16 November 2021
| Updated: 17:44, 16 November 2021
A huge recruitment drive at three jails on the Isle of Sheppey is underway.
Governors are urging people to consider a career as a prison officer at HMP Elmley, HMP Standford Hill and HMP Swaleside.
The campaign comes as the government announces a £4billion investment into prisons.
Dawn Mauldon used to be boss at Standford Hill open prison but is now in charge at Elmley whihc looks after prisoners on remand. She said: “It’s the team we have at HMP Elmley which makes this such an enjoyable place to work. You can form friendships for life."
Gary Price, new governor at HMP Standford Hill, said: “Ensuring we have the best people for the job but also supporting them as they progress throughout their career is so important.
"We’re always looking for new officers. We need people who can build trust and be positive role models."
HMP Swaleside's Mark Icke said: “Prison officers play an essential role in changing the lives of those in custody, as well as keeping the public protected.
“The role can be challenging, but it can also be rewarding and there’s no shortage of support and guidance.”
One prison officer from Swaleside - officer Kelly - has been at the jail for four years after being an entertainer abroad.
The mum-of-three said: "Before becoming a prison officer I thought it was a really macho job where you spent your time locking and unlocking doors.
"Now I’m here, I realise it is so much more than that and our work is vital in helping to rehabilitate prisoners and hopefully reduce their chances of reoffending.
“We need officers from all backgrounds who can build trust and be positive role models. Becoming a prison officer has given me the chance to learn new things and to push myself and I love being part of such a great team.”
You don’t need qualifications to become a prison officer and the service says it is looking for people who can demonstrate good communication and influencing skills, commitment to quality, effective decision-making, care and understanding.
The role offers a starting salary of £27,851 and a civil service pension.
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