By Meg Dickens
The first of three hiring events at the Northeast Correctional Complex (NECX) held earlier this week, and employees question whether this effort will stop the
staffing issue that plagues the facility.
Doubts remain high, but hopes are equally high. The question is which side rings true.
Shortages have caused large amounts of overtime to fill the gaps. Some employees have reported working up to a month without a day off within the past year. That is one issue that would be solved by hiring new employees.
The hiring event offers a plethora of benefits, which include a bonus and a raise from previously advertised salary rates. This particular strategy has been successful locally in NECX’s mirror facility, the county jail.
After the Johnson County Commission approved a pay raise and recently departed members to be eligible for a bonus if returning, Sheriff Eddie Tester reported hiring four employees within the span of approval on that Thursday night and the Monday following.
The main difference between these facilities is how widely advertised the shortage has been. Mentions of incidents, such as last week’s occurrence where an inmate was stabbed and taken
to the hospital for treatment,
and the highly publicized “unsafe conditions” that have reached state government ears could either encourage
or scare away potential recruits.
As previously reported, State Representative Scotty Campbell states that he has not seen “any changes” after the meeting he hosted in the Crewette Building about this issue in October.
“The meeting made it clear Northeast Correctional Complex is way worse than I had heard and, frankly, there seems to be no relief in sight,” Representative Campbell explained. “This prison clearly has a leadership issue.”
NECX is located at 5249 Highway 57 West in Mountain City, Tennessee. Anyone interested in joining can
attend one of the hiring events on November 30, December 7, or December 14 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Officials are offering
same-day conditional hiring. Find the online application Google Document through the QR code on the hiring event flyer.
For information, visit tn.gov/correction/sp/state-prison-list.