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Correction Counselor I
DISTINGUISHING FEATURES OF THE CLASS
The work involves responsibility for providing support, guidance and assistance to an inmate population of men and women in the Onondaga County Department of Correction to facilitate their institutional adjustment and re-entry to the community. The primary responsibility of an employee in this class is initial intake interviews with new inmates which includes sentence calculation, needs assessment, screening for mental health and developmental disability problems and custody classification. An employee in this class also has responsibility for carrying out programs within the program division providing individual assistance to inmates. Under the general supervision of the Casework Supervisor, the employee is assigned to a caseload in addition to having direct program responsibility and is cross-trained to perform all other program functions. Supervision of subordinates is not usually exercised in this class. Does related work as required.
TYPICAL WORK ACTIVITIES
Conducts intake interviews, needs assessment, mental health and developmental disabilities screening and custody classification.
Assists inmates in their adjustments to the institution and resolution of personal, family, legal and other problems; assists inmates in planning re-entry.
Works with appropriate community service agencies in case management to meet inmate needs.
Provides information as necessary to other law enforcement and social service agencies.
Compiles data and prepares reports; maintains files and records.
Attends professional meetings and training sessions on behalf of the department.
Assists in coordinating programs provided within the facility by community agencies.
FULL PERFORMANCE KNOWLEDGES, SKILLS, ABILITIES AND PERSONAL CHARACTERISTICS
Good knowledge of the techniques involved in counseling and case management activities to assist inmates in readjustment problems.
Good knowledge of community agencies and resources in disciplines including but not limited to mental health, education, family services, developmental disability, child abuse and neglect, substance abuse, legal services and criminal justice.
Good knowledge of operation of correctional institution and procedures relative to safety and security of institution, staff and inmates.
Good organizational skills including prioritizing responsibilities and managing a large caseload.
Ability to express oneself clearly, both verbally and in writing.
Ability to work in a highly structured environment.
Ability to read and understand written established rules, regulations and procedures.
Ability to understand the personality and behavior problems of inmates and to assist in their solution.
Ability to conduct effective interviews and to meet and deal effectively with people.
Working knowledge of laws and procedures relating to incarcerated individuals.
Basic computer skills.
A) Graduation from a regionally accredited or New York State registered college or university with a baccalaureate degree in correctional studies, counseling, criminal justice, human service, psychology, social sciences, social work or sociology; OR,
B) Four (4) years of paraprofessional or professional level work experience, or its part time equivalent, in *human services.
*Human services comprise those career fields in which practitioners help others to solve their physical or emotional problems or to meet their physical, emotional, or mental needs, or to enhance their cultural, social, spiritual or physical conditions. Practitioners in this class are typically characterized by working with people on an individual or group basis.