Share this Job

Correctional Officer (Relief)



Competition # : 37754 

Department: Justice

Location: Multiple Locations (Dartmouth, Pictou, and Sydney)

Type of Employment: Relief

Union Status: Exclusion - Non Union - NSPG 

Closing Date: 2/7/2023 (Applications are accepted until 11:59 PM Atlantic Time)

About Us


The Correctional Services division of the Department of Justice is responsible for the administration and operation of community and custody-based programs and services for adults and young persons. Within the Correctional Services core business area, there are two programs: Community Corrections & Correctional Facilities. Each of these program areas are broken down into closely related activities that have a specific impact on the programs target group.


Four (4) adult Correctional Facilities and one (1) youth centre provide the safety and security of persons in custody while providing programs that address dynamic criminogenic factors to assist with their successful, reintegration back into the community.


Nova Scotia Correctional Services utilizes an evidence-based approach in both Community Corrections and Correctional Facilities. Core Correctional Practices (CCP) is the foundational practice that drives reintegration and rehabilitation practices deployed within Correctional Services. Utilizing CCP, Correctional Services staff can effectively interact, manage behavior, and help facilitate change, within target populations. For more information on the Department of Justice Correctional Services please visit our website:

About Our Opportunity

Through a partnership between Correctional Services and the Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC), program applicants will be required to complete the eight-week Essential Skills in Correctional Services Course. Upon successful completion of the course, applicants will be guaranteed a job offer as a Correctional Officer, Casual Relief, and receive an Essential Skills in Correctional Services Certificate. The costs related to the course (tuition, books, lunch, equipment, and student fees) will be paid by Correctional Services.

Correctional Services will also be offering a stipend for students accepted into the Essential Skills in Correctional Services course. The stipend will help to offset the costs of travel, accommodations and living expenses.

Applicants who are currently employed as a Correctional Officer for 3 or more years may be expedited through the Essential Skills in Corrections course. These candidates must provide appropriate background checks from supervisors in their current facility.


As a Correctional Officer, you are responsible for the safe, secure custody, control, and supervision of sentenced and remand adults in custody in a Nova Scotia Correctional Facility on a rotating shift basis. Our Correctional Officers undertake duties associated with your shift assignment in various areas of the facility. These areas include Living Units, Admission and Discharge, Reception/Visitation, Recreation, Laundry, and Canteen Services. In this role, you will have regular and ongoing interaction with adults in custody, while encouraging pro-social behaviour. You are also responsible for administrative functions related to the case management Justice Enterprise Information Network database (JEIN) and the Behavioural Management System.


Correctional Officers work with diverse adults in custody population and are accountable for promoting and adhering to Policy and Procedures, Standard Operating Procedures, Post Orders and Directives.


As part of this role, you will be involved with conducting counts and searches, writing reports, ensuring adults in custody security and safety, and compiling tasks related to physical plant cleanliness and maintenance requirements.

Primary Accountabilities


Facility Security

Provides dynamic supervision and safe secure custody, control, and supervision for adults in custody.

Participate in case management, approve, and arrange professional and personal visits, approve professional phone calls, escort within the facility, respond to complaints and requests, assist in the completion of forms, and supervise work activity inside and outside the facility.


Physical Plant Maintenance

Supervise facility cleaning, supervise outside work detail, and submit maintenance work orders when required.



Advise adults in custody of available programs, referring and adhering to the posted program schedule and support program work in the living units.


Administration and Communication

Record and communicate information through reports, forms, logbooks, email and JEIN documentation and participate in committees or meetings as requested by the Superintendent or designate.

Communicate in a timely, transparent, and effective manner and participate in workplace wellness initiatives by promoting teamwork, leadership, diversity, and a healthy workplace.

Qualifications and Experience


You possess a High School Diploma and 2 years of related experience. An equivalent combination of training and experience will be considered.


Typical equivalencies include: a certificate/diploma from an accredited Correctional Officer program or a University Degree in a related field of study.


 Your experience and knowledge in the following areas are considered assets in this role:


  • Experience in law enforcement, security, or the military
  • Previous employment as a Correctional Officer
  • Knowledge or experience in a computerized/automated environment
  • Leadership experience (i.e., leading youth programs, groups, or committees)



Include, but not limited to:


  • A related 2 year post secondary diploma
  • A related 1 year post secondary diploma and 1 year of related experience
  • 5 years of continuous employment in an unrelated field


Applicants relying on education and experience equivalencies must demonstrate such equivalencies in their application.


Based on the employment status and Union agreement, the Government of Nova Scotia offers its employees a wide range of benefits such as  Health, Dental, Life Insurance, Pension, General Illness (Short and Long Term), Vacation and Employee and Family Assistance Programs. Click here to learn more about our various benefits offering and eligibility criteria. 

Working Conditions

Required to work shiftwork which can be physically, mentally, and emotionally demanding.


Relief employees fill gaps in the schedule and replace full time employees when operational requirements demand as determined by the Employer. As a relief employee there is no guarantee of hours.


Must be constantly alert when in contact with the adult in custody population, not being aware of your surroundings may create the potential for violence and/or injury.


Required to perform person and area searches and use restraint equipment which is physically demanding.


Potential for disruption to personal and family life when there is a major disturbance at the facility.


A number of the adults in custody population are identified as being a high-risk population for infection of hepatitis, MRSA, HIV and/or AIDS.


Frequently must deal with physically and verbally abusive adults in custody and may be assaulted, threatened, and in extreme circumstances could be surrounded by hostile individuals  when completing rounds or involved in interventions.


The facility is a 24-hour operation and is a tobacco-free environment.

Assessment and Interview Process


Qualified applicants will be invited to a competency-based job interview. During the interview, applicants must demonstrate well developed communication, interpersonal and interviewing, counselling and conflict resolution skills that leads to effectively dealing with adults in custody and to function well as a member of a team. Correctional Officers serve as role models to adults in custody, and therefore must possess sound observation, decision-making, and problem-solving skills, as well as the ability to respond effectively to crisis situations.


If you are selected for an interview, you are required to bring copies of a valid drivers license, proof of all stated education and training, and references.


An in-depth medical form must be completed by a doctor confirming your ability to work as a Correctional Officer.


Here is the form:


You will be asked to submit a completed Pre-Employment Questionnaire Form (PEQ), prior to the appointment with staff to discuss your PEQ Form. The questionnaire focuses on honesty and integrity and candidates must answer all questions accurately and truthfully. Dishonesty or non-disclosure will result in elimination of the candidate’s application.


Here is the form:

Additional Information


In accordance with the COVID-19 Mandatory Vaccination Protocol in High-Risk Settings full vaccination is a condition of employment for this opportunity.


Candidates must identify the geographic location(s) where they prefer to work when applying. The location(s) of the vacancies are Dartmouth, Pictou, and Sydney.


If selected for the position, you must provide a current copy of an Emergency First Aid Certificate and Vulnerable Sector Check.


A relief employee is an employee who is not regularly scheduled by the Employer, but who works relief assignments on an as-needed basis as operational requirements demand. As such, a relief employee does not have guaranteed hours of work. PLEASE NOTE: Candidates will not be considered for an interview if applications are incomplete or are missing information. 


Please note when competing for vacancies, a successful Temporary, Term or Permanent Relief Employee who is currently employed with the province will maintain their bargaining unit status, seniority, and benefit level at the new workplace.

What We Offer


  • Career Development where you have access to career guidance, tools, resources, and ongoing training for every stage of your career.
  • Engaging workplace. Our Employees feel valued, respected, connected, and tuned in. We have forward-thinking policies and strategies.
  • countless career paths. 
  • Department Specific Flexible working schedules.


Pay Grade:  ACC 04 Hourly

Salary Range:  $26.30 - $32.24 Hourly


Employment Equity Statement:

Our goal is to be a diverse workforce that is representative, at all job levels, of the citizens we serve.  The Government of Nova Scotia has an Employment Equity Policy, and we welcome applications from Indigenous People, African Nova Scotians and Other Racially Visible Persons, Persons with Disabilities and Women in occupations or positions where they are under-represented.  If you are a member of one of these equity groups, you are encouraged to self-identify on your electronic application.


A relief employee is an employee who is not regularly scheduled by the Employer, but who works relief assignments on an as-needed basis as operational requirements demand. As such, a relief employee does not have guaranteed hours of work. PLEASE NOTE: Candidates will not be considered for an interview if applications are incomplete or are missing information. 


Please note: when competing for vacancies, a successful Temporary, Term or Permanent Relief Employee who is currently employed with the Province will maintain their bargaining unit status, seniority and benefit level at the new workplace.


Current government employees may access this posting through the link below:



Offer of employment is conditional upon the completion of all applicable background checks and confirmation of credentials, the results of which must be satisfactory to the employer. We thank all applicants for the interest, however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted. All questions and concerns may be directed to