Calhoun Co. Sheriff struggling to hire correctional officers and deputies

Published: Feb. 2, 2023 at 10:09 PM CST
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Calhoun County Sheriff said he is worried the release of hundreds of state inmates will put a strain on the already severely understaffed jail.

Sheriff Mathew Wade said the county is down nearly 40 percent in staff. He said he could hire 15 jailers right now and still have spots to fill.

Wade said the county has a lot of responsibilities and ground to cover, between the jail, 2,000 calls per month, the courthouse, and 17 schools. With 51 deputy spots total, he said he could hire anywhere from eight to ten right now, but he said no one is applying because it’s a hard job. Wade thinks their pay scale needs to be raised, but he doesn’t have the power to do it.

“Everything has gone up except the numbers or workers and their pay,” Wade said. “My work load has gone up, people call for law enforcement more and more each day, so the workload is high and the resources are few. Now, the state of Alabama is going to make it tougher on every sheriff.”

Wade said he is worried about a newly released inmate re-offending, because it’s harder to fill the correctional officer spots. He said the job is basically being in jail yourself for 12 hours a day.

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