Texas Department of Criminal Justice

www.tdcj.state.tx.us
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Texas Department of Criminal Justice Reviews

Updated March 25, 2015
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3.1
109 Reviews
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Pros
  • The benefits are great when management lets you use them and the work never stops so there is job security (in 10 reviews)

  • Benefits, Job security, Experience (in 7 reviews)

Cons
  • The major con while being employed at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice would have to be the low pay (in 6 reviews)

  • Backstabbing upper management, different policy enforcement at each unit (in 5 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

Employee Reviews

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  1. Would not go back

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Correctional Officer III in Huntsville, TX
    Former Employee - Correctional Officer III in Huntsville, TX

    I worked at Texas Department of Criminal Justice

    Pros

    Alot of job opportunities, hires just about anyone

    Cons

    Not enough pay for the job done, horrible conditions for employees

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    better training for supervisors, and conditions for officers.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  2. Good

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Texas in New Boston, TX
    Former Employee - Texas in New Boston, TX

    I worked at Texas Department of Criminal Justice

    Pros

    Benefits...are the best thing about working for the state of tx.

    Cons

    Safety....what else to say...work in a prison safety is the biggest concern

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    On boards don't always pick people due to who ur kin to or family with....pick who would can could do the job for you. Be fair!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  3. sgt, cof correction

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Sgt of Corrections in Galveston, TX
    Former Employee - Sgt of Corrections in Galveston, TX

    I worked at Texas Department of Criminal Justice

    Pros

    job security days off great co worker

    Cons

    favortism long hours lot of test

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    give every one a chance to promote be more open minded with all employees

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
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  5. It was a great experience, relatively easy training academy, great staff support and quite a bit of an adrenaline rusher

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Correctional Officer II in Fort Stockton, TX
    Former Employee - Correctional Officer II in Fort Stockton, TX

    I worked at Texas Department of Criminal Justice full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    The best thing would be the pay and the support you get from staff members and supervisors.

    Cons

    Long shifts, a bit dangerous and you might have to travel a few hours to the job.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  6. Consistent work, negative environment.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Correctional Officer III
    Current Employee - Correctional Officer III

    I have been working at Texas Department of Criminal Justice full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Consistent work, job can be different each day depending on where you're posted that day. Provides one meal per shift (if you can stand the food).

    Cons

    Don't always get breaks/time for meals. Upper-rank staff is not supportive of lower-ranked members. Favoritism is rampant throughout, even with the wardens. Policy is different from unit to unit and can change on a whim. Certain groups of people appear to get special consideration by uper-rank, wardens, and TDCJ. Accusations occur on a regular basis among employees, the favorites get a pass while the others suffer, even if it's found that these accusations have no merit or evidentiary support- they stay on your record. TDC officers have less rights than the inmates they care for. Following the rules doesn't guarantee that you get to keep your job- you can be written up for anything. Three write-ups, even if they are disproven, will get you disciplined or fired. If you're a "favorite" or among a specific group of people these write-ups tend to disappear. Some officers sleep through their shifts with no reprimands, even when written-up or reported several times. Officers leaving the employ of TDC are allowed to file any complaints, false or otherwise- sometimes against entire shifts of their co-workers- when these accusations are true it's fine, but the majority are found to be false and no action can be taken by the falsely accused. Sometimes officers will file complaints against another fellow officer just so the accuser will be allowed to transfer to another shift- the accused is reprimanded or fired on the opinion of upper-rank or the warden, even in cases where there is no support to the claim.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    More cameras are needed for monitoring both inmates and officers. Allow anonymous employee reviews of all members of staff- investigate all reviews.
    Write-ups for the sake of write-ups should cease to happen, these bring down moral and discourage trust among officers. Write-ups that are found to be baseless or have no merit, or are false should be dismissed from record and not be allowed to contribute to future analysis or judgements of employees. All safety concerns should be addressed seriously and in a timely manner, instead of disregarded and ignored. Those who file false reports should be reprimanded instead of punishing the falsely accused.
    Policy and how it is enforced should remain consistent and not vary so drastically from unit to unit (taking into account the gender/ages housed at each unit, and the level of security required at each).

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  7. Under paid and under appreciated.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Correctional Officer in Amarillo, TX
    Current Employee - Correctional Officer in Amarillo, TX

    I have been working at Texas Department of Criminal Justice full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Stable employment. Employee and family health insurance (family member premiums are out of pocket). Generous paid time off.

    Cons

    In the years past even though we receive low salaries compared to other states our health and retirement benefits made the low pay somewhat tolerable. However, as the cost of living continues to rise our salaries have not. Our salaries our set by the State Legislature and we are the step-children of State of Texas employees. Every raise we have received in the past twenty years has been offset by an almost equal increase in our insurance costs. Although the State pays for each officers health insurance premium, we must cover the cost of our spouses' and children's health insurance premiums. This is where we have been stuck. There have been a couple of times that we have receive raises in the three to five percent range that actually cost us money after our family health insurance premiums were raised, and we were bumped to a higher tax bracket by the salary increase.

    The low salary is also detrimental to the quality of new recruits. With our agency's low starting wage we have a hard time recruiting and hiring quality individuals that are looking for a long term career. The agency has gotten to the point that they will hire just about anybody without a felony record that has completed high school or earned their GED. It doesn't matter whether they've had any other work experience. It doesn't matter if they can write a complete grammatically correct sentence. We lose new officers as fast as we hire them. When the oil fields were booming, we lost people faster than we could replace them, and it hasn't slowed even though the oil boom has. Every night when I go to work we are short at least thirty-three percent of our security staff! How many officers is that? Well on any given night if we were fully staffed and every officer showed up for work we would have about 160 officers on duty for the night shift. However, lately on a good night we will have 100 to 110 officers. That is spread out over three different departments as well. Our unit has an approximately 2400 bed general population department. An approximately 500 bed in patient psych department, and an approximately 800 bed high security (administrative segregation) unit. There are an additional three to eight food service officers and managers on duty. We are out numbered each night by a number greater than thirty to one!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Quit white washing the staff shortages on the units to the State Legislature. Start demanding higher salaries to attract better applicants that are willing and able to put up with the stresses associated with dealing with convicted felons. Only three other states have lower salaries than our state. The states with higher paid correctional officers do not have the staff shortages that we have been enduring for the past fifteen plus years! It costs more to continuously train new staff than it does to retain trained, dedicated, and motivated staff.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  8. Awesome

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Correctional Officer in Huntsville, TX
    Former Employee - Correctional Officer in Huntsville, TX

    I worked at Texas Department of Criminal Justice full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Great Benefits and a nice state job

    Cons

    The compensation could be more better than it is now compared to the risk involved

    Positive Outlook
  9. The work was always challenging in that we were solid modeling all of our products and new builds which were custom jobs

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Computer Draftsman in Teague, TX
    Former Employee - Computer Draftsman in Teague, TX

    I worked at Texas Department of Criminal Justice

    Pros

    I learned an entirely new craft, that being sheet metal

    Cons

    As an offender we were always harrased but the unit's guards.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    It is to late to give advice since the plant is now closed.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  10. It is what you make of it.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Correctional Officer III in Huntsville, TX
    Current Employee - Correctional Officer III in Huntsville, TX

    I have been working at Texas Department of Criminal Justice full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    The people you work with have your back usually. Most of the leadership knows what they are doing. 4 days off is great

    Cons

    Sometimes the people you work with do not have your back. Inmates sure do whine a lot. They have no air conditioner so it's hot as hell in the summer

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Follow the rules... That is all I got. I do not know what else to say. Thank you for listening. Good bye now.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  11. Challenging

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Correctional Officer IV in Cuero, TX
    Current Employee - Correctional Officer IV in Cuero, TX

    I have been working at Texas Department of Criminal Justice full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    This job brings good insurance benefits and retirement. Get paid while training. Twelve hour days work four off four..

    Cons

    Challenges your temperament and character. Can be stressful.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

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