Eighteen new Probationary Sheriff’s Officers joined the NSW Sheriff’s Office today, having taken their oaths to begin new careers, protecting our courts and those who use them, across 11 regional locations and three courthouses in Greater Sydney.
Attorney General Mark Speakman congratulated each of the graduates at a ceremony at Sydney’s Downing Centre court complex.
“Strengthening security at major regional courthouses is critical to ensuring we can continue to protect all court users, including victims of crime, witnesses, the judiciary and the staff who support them,” Mr Speakman said.
Four of the new Sheriff’s Officers have been appointed as part of the NSW Government’s $150 million package to help ease pressure on District Courts around the State, which includes seven additional judges.
“More judges mean extra courts, improved infrastructure and the additional staff needed to ensure proceedings run smoothly and efficiently. Two new Sheriff’s Officers will be stationed at Tamworth District Court while there will be one each at Orange and Newcastle,” Mr Speakman said.
While violent incidents are rare in NSW courts, the extra Sheriff’s Officers will make people feel safer and help to maintain a calm atmosphere. Sixteen of the Probationary Sheriffs appointed today are filling vacant positions in courthouses in regional locations ranging from Broken Hill in the far west to Nowra and Coffs Harbour on the coast.
They have a range of employment backgrounds and achievements including massage therapy, Fire and Rescue NSW , landscape gardening, Royal Australian Navy, Corrective Services, truck driving and carpentry.
The new recruits will be part of a workforce of more than 280 Sheriff’s Officers responsible for court security, administering the jury system and performing seizures and evictions.
NSW Sheriff Tracey Hall said the graduates have taken part in seven weeks of rigorous training at the University of Western Sydney.
“Every day as a Sheriff’s Officer is different, with new challenges and rewarding experiences. The training is focused on communication skills to resolve conflicts in the courthouse without force, but if called upon they are also trained in defensive tactics,” Ms Hall said.
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