July 21-27, 2019 is Pretrial, Probation, and Parole Supervision Week. This is the annual celebration of our system, with the goal of raising awareness about the work community corrections professionals do every day. As United States Pretrial Services and Probation Officers, we perform at an extremely unique level, one I often describe as the “graduate level” of community corrections. After experiencing nearly twenty-five years in this profession, there have been changes. Arguably however, the core function of supervision and investigations are the same. Community supervision, rehabilitation, deterrence, determination of risk and flight, finding education and employment opportunities for offenders, and finding the right combination of those factors set forth in 18 U.S.C. 3553(a) in imposing a sentence. We do it all, each and every day, with each new case or client.
For me, it has never been dull or boring, each day a new challenge, each day not like the one before. There are so many knowledgeable and talented officers in our system, so many unique individuals who enter our doors, each day is a learning experience. Each day a new situation.
We have one week a year that celebrates our profession. But in the 52 weeks of each year, we choose a career you should celebrate each day. In the arena of Criminal Justice, the talk of reform and change, what remains the constant---the role of the Pretrial, Probation and Parole Officer; the concept has not changed since its inception in the late 1800’s. We are introduced to an offender and figure them out as to risk of flight and danger (pretrial); we examine their needs, history and sentence (presentence investigations); and then, we guide them through change, rehabilitation, and hold them accountable (supervision). Whatever role you perform today, Nice Job!
Share this with your office, your colleagues, with others you know in the state or local level. Thank them for their service, and wish them a Happy Pretrial, Probation, and Parole Supervision Week, 2019.