UTAH

Program to hire younger employees at Weber County Jail extended

Feb 16, 2022, 8:52 AM | Updated: 4:30 pm
Weber County Jail...
FILE: Interior of the Weber County Correctional Facility. Photo credit: Alex Cabrero

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah lawmakers have voted to make permanent a temporary hiring change at the Weber County Correctional Facility.

A pilot program approved by lawmakers in 2019 lowered the minimum age for Corrections officers, lowering the age from 21 to 19 for hiring eligibility.

Lawmakers voted during the 2022 legislative session to make the change permanent. 

Weber County Sheriff Ryan Arbon said that during the last year, the jail has been short between 30 to 50 Corrections deputies.  

“We hire the finest in Weber County. We are confident there are 19-year-olds looking to start a career and make a difference in our communities,” Arbon said.

“Allowing this new age group to apply will give the next generation of law enforcement a jump-start opportunity to interact with multiple divisions of our office including our CSI, Enforcement and Detectives.”

The new hires will need to undergo a 14-week training program.

Kindness matters

 Chief Deputy Phillip Reese of the Weber County Sheriffs Office explains more about the job of being a Corrections officer with KSL NewsRadio’s Dave Noriega and Debbie Dujanovic.

In the hiring description for new deputies at the Weber County jail was the word “kind.” 

“I think it’s really important to see our individuals that are incarcerated . . . as being people at the end of the day, generally speaking, and often they’re facing the worst moments of their life while they’re being housed in our facility.

“It’s very important for our team members or deputies to be able to see them as human beings and to treat them with respect and dignity,” Reese said.

Is 19 too young?

“What made you think that 19-year-olds are ready for this kind of job?” Dave asked.

“We are working diligently to have a solid and comprehensive field-training program to make sure that we’re giving these young individuals that are in coming onboard to our team all the support and the ongoing training to make sure that they are successful in their careers,” Reese said.

The job of Corrections Deputy Sheriff pays $23.21/hour, according to the Weber County jobs website.

Dave & Dujanovic can be heard weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon. on KSL NewsRadio. Users can find the show on the KSL NewsRadio website and app, as well as Apple Podcasts and Google Play. 

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Program to hire younger employees at Weber County Jail extended