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Lubbock-area prisons short-staffed, looking to fill positions

Published: Nov. 6, 2014 at 11:00 AM CST|Updated: Nov. 6, 2014 at 12:25 PM CST
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LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - A shortage of correctional officers is a problem faced by jails and prisons all cross the country and right here on the South Plains.

The John T. Montford Unit in Lubbock is one of dozens of prisons in Texas looking to fill vacant positions.  The Texas Department of Criminal Justice is holding a career expo on Thursday where they will work to recruit employees for the Montford Unit and several other area prisons. 

The expo is being held at the Texas Tech Health Science Center at 3601 4th Street, in building 8, room 100.

The event will begin at 6:30 p.m.

Montford Unit Senior Warden Robert Stevens says the TDCJ is looking to hire employees for his prison, and also the Smith Unit in Lamesa, the Rudd Unit in Brownfield, and the Daniel Unit in Snyder.

"It's an opportunity for anybody that might be interested in a career in the criminal justice field to come out and learn about working within the correctional environment," Stevens said.

The Montford Unit houses more than 800 inmates who have been sentenced for a criminal conviction.  To keep the inmates in check, Stevens says it takes a thick skin, maturity and a willingness to do a job that many can't do.

"As long as you can think clearly and you have high integrity and can thrive on challenges, then you can make a good career in corrections," Stevens said.

The TDCJ is also looking to fill other positions, including laundry, food service, maintenance, and transportation.

Stevens says a career in a prison is not for the faint of heart, but it could be the right career for the right person.  He says potential employees should consider how rewarding the job can be.

"The stability, the family atmosphere.  It's just a good job but a fulfilling job because we are providing a service to our citizens of Texas by providing public safety," Stevens said.

For more information about the TDCJ expo, visit: http://www.tdcj.state.tx.us.

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