What is a Parole and Probation Agent?The primary role of a Parole/Probation Officer (“Field Agent”) is to protect the public by guiding felony offenders through terms of supervision ordered by the Parole Board for eligible prisoners deemed ready for reentry into the community or by the courts for offenders placed on probation in lieu of incarceration. Agents collaborate with law enforcement agencies, human services providers, employers and offenders’ families to reduce recidivism and improve the quality of life in their communities.
The conditions under which parolees and probationers are afforded their freedom vary from case to case. Counseling, educational programming, community service, curfews, electronic monitoring, drug and alcohol testing and victim restitution are often required. Prohibitions include possession of firearms and other unlawful behavior and may include driving, contact with certain persons, consumption of alcohol, etc. Skills in interviewing, case management, report writing, investigation, substance abuse testing and self-defense are important in most agent assignments but some require specialized training. Field Agents play an important part in correcting the behavior, thinking and values of offenders. When offenders are held accountable by authorities genuinely invested in their success and constantly encouraged to live up to the expectations of the Parole Board or the courts, many are motivated to change. Turning lives around for the better is the reward of this challenging occupation.