NC Public Safety, National Guard Host Job Fair Career event taps military, veterans and their families

RALEIGH

The North Carolina Department of Public Safety and the National Guard today hosted a one-day career event at Joint Force Headquarters in Raleigh. The job fair was open to all military service members, veterans, spouses and dependents of service members interested in networking or looking for career opportunities throughout the Department of Public Safety.

The career event was designed to match applicants with departmental job openings in the State Highway Patrol, State Capitol Police, Adult Correction and Juvenile Justice, Emergency Management, National Guard, the State Bureau of Investigation and others.

“Our military veterans and their families are very familiar with public safety and public service,” Secretary Erik A. Hooks said. “Their skill sets and unique experiences align well with our mission of ensuring public safety and quality of life.”

There are opportunities across the entire department, but an area with greatest need is within Prisons. Secretary Hooks recently unveiled many action steps DPS has taken aimed at improving safety and security at prison facilities across the state to include enhancing its hiring processes of correctional officers.

“In order to address the vacancy levels at our prisons, we have been examining the hiring process,” said Secretary Hooks. “We are committed to making the necessary changes that will increase the numbers of qualified applicants from which managers can hire new staff.”

Today’s career fair is just one-way DPS will increase its applicant pool. As of today, four correctional employees have been assigned as recruiters focusing solely on filling positions in Prisons. Another initiative designed to increase the applicant pool is moving the Correctional Officer Physical Abilities Test (COPAT) from the beginning of a candidate’s interview process, to after the employee’s hire date. Newly hired correctional officers will have their first opportunity to take the COPAT during Basic Correctional Officer Training. If an employee passes Basic Correctional Officer Training but does not successfully complete COPAT initially, he/she will be given two additional attempts to successfully complete COPAT during the probationary status period.

“We remain committed to hiring candidates who are both mentally and physically able to perform the responsibilities of a certified officer,” said Judge Reuben Young, interim Chief Deputy Secretary of Adult Correction and Juvenile Justice.

More than 100 prospective applicants attended today’s job fair. HR representatives from various DPS divisions offered tips on how to complete state government applications and provided networking opportunities for applicants.

"Providing opportunities like this job fair for Guardsmen, veterans, service members and their spouses to find employment within the Department of Public Safety benefits everyone," said Maj. Gen. Greg Lusk, North Carolina National Guard's Adjutant General. "The strength of the Guard rests in our citizen-soldiers and airmen staying in the Guard long-term, and without a good civilian job most leave the force. There are many job opportunities in DPS and we look forward to partnering with them and having more of these events across the state."

Resources and leadership from all the divisions will continue to collaborate on the implementation of initiatives designed to bolster recruitment efforts for the entire agency.

Another career fair open to the general public is set for April 18.

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