Legislation sponsored by Senator Robert Singer (R-Ocean) that would recognize investigators in the Department of Corrections as police officers passed the Senate today.
“These men and women serve an important role in providing for our public safety and they should be recognized for their hard work and sacrifice, ” Singer stated. “These investigators perform the same basic functions as local police officers, yet remain ineligible to participate in certain programs or apply for certain grants. That is not right.”
Under current law, Department of Corrections investigators are authorized to act as officers to detect, apprehend, arrest, and convict offenders who violate the law. They receive the same basic training as corrections officers, as well as firearms training approved by the Police Training Commission.
Renaming them under the civil service system may make them eligible for additional law enforcement grants that are generally only available to police officers. Additionally, more professional training opportunities that are generally restricted to police officers may be made available to these officers.
This legislation has the support of the New Jersey Fraternal Order of Police and now heads to the Assembly for consideration.