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Psychological Screening Program for Correction Officer Applicants, 2001

NCJ Number
Date Published
10 pages
This report summarizes New York State’s Psychological Screening Program for Correction Officer Applicants’ activities for the year 2001 with information on legislative history, intent and program history, program overview, candidate evaluation process, and probationary termination study.
Originally enacted in 1983 and last amended in 2001, the Psychological Screening Program for the State of New York, Department of Correctional Services is a psychological screening for corrections officer candidates to identify those individuals displaying psychopathology or other psychological limitations that could impair their job performance and effectiveness. This 16th report presents a summary of the Program’s operation in 2001. Since June 1999, the Law Enforcement Psychological Services has prepared psychological reports. In 2001, there was a substantial decrease in the number of correction officer applicants receiving psychological ratings in comparison to the year 2000. This was attributed to the opening of new facilities in 2000 and a decrease in the inmate population in 2001 leading to a decrease in new officer appointments. Conditions are set forth under Section Eight of the New York State Correction Law under which a correction officer candidate can be disqualified from consideration. The various aspects of the assessment program under the screening contract with LEPS are presented and include: (1) a psychological battery consisting of the California Psychological Inventory, Personality Assessment Inventory, State-Trait Anger Expression Inventory, and the Personal History Questionnaire-LEPS/Roberts. Candidates are evaluated on 15 different rating dimensions, reflective of psychological functioning and adjustment, using a 6-point rating scale. During 2000, 2,019 ratings were completed by LEPS with 797 appointed as corrections officers. These appointed officers received a 1-year correction officer probationary time period. Among the 797 appointments, there were 11 probationary terminations resulting in a 1.4 percent probationary year termination rate.