Sixteen new custodial officers join Lotus Glen prison frontline

Published Friday, 18 August, 2017 at 12:15 PM

Minister for Police, Fire and Emergency Services and Minister for Corrective Services
The Honourable Mark Ryan

Sixteen new custodial officers will join the frontline at Lotus Glen Correctional Centre after graduating from the local Queensland Corrective Services Academy today.

Minister for Corrective Services Mark Ryan said the Palaszczuk Government is committed to staff and community safety with more correctional officers working in our correctional centres than ever before.

“This is the sixth graduation in the last 11 weeks across Queensland as we continue to deliver on our commitment to ensure appropriate staffing levels in response to increased prisoner numbers,” Minister Ryan said.

“Our frontline correctional officers do a great job in what can be challenging environments and the Palaszczuk Government will continue to provide them with the resources they need to do their jobs safely and effectively.”

Member for Barron River Craig Crawford, who represented the Corrective Services Minister, said this latest graduation reinforces the Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to staff safety and why we have increased the number of custodial officers in our prisons by more than 700 since 2015.

“These 16 new correctional officers have made a commitment to keep Queenslanders safe, and I thank them for their dedication to a challenging role,” Mr Crawford said.

“While our graduates have one thing in common – to keep our communities safe - each of these 16 individuals have vastly different backgrounds, in particular graduating custodial officers Trevor Thelning and David Trevelyan.

Graduate Trevor Thelning, formerly a self-employed electrician and soldier, revelled in the hands-on parts of the extensive training course.

“When I started to do my research about the job, the more I looked the more I knew that this would be a job for me,” he said.

“(Looking forward), I would like to build further on the skills that I obtained in the Army and my love of training by becoming a control and restraints instructor, and use these skills by being a member of the CERT team.”

Fellow graduate David Trevelyan applied for the role to learn some new skills and step out of his comfort zone. As a new father, he was keen for a career with a healthy balance of work and family life.

“I intend to spend the next couple of years learning the different areas and seeing what my strengths are, hopefully finding roles which push myself further and give back to the community,” he said.

Acting QCS Commissioner John Forster said the custodial officer entry program (COEP) was based on best practice approaches to prepare officers for the job ahead.

“The men and women who graduated today completed 364 hours of training over a 10-week period, including two weeks’ practical on-the-job training inside a correctional centre,” Acting Commissioner Forster said.

“The QCS COEP focuses on offender management, correctional centre practice directives, behaviour management, conflict resolution, control and restraint, use of firearms, legislation and intelligence.

“The training places great emphasis on staff safety through the delivery of sessions about safety, situational awareness and communication, behavioural awareness and violence de-escalation techniques.”


Media contact: Cathie Thompson 0413 372 387