RICHMOND — The annual celebration of Probation and Parole Officers’ Week, July 16-22, 2017, holds special meaning this year as the Virginia Department of Corrections commemorates the 75th anniversary of the creation of its probation and parole system.
“This milestone offers an opportunity to recognize our long-standing commitment to reentry success,” said Director Harold Clarke. “Virginia has a well-established tradition of excellence in its public safety efforts. The Commonwealth’s probation and parole officers demonstrate on a daily basis their focus on helping our clients make better decisions and successfully reenter their communities.”
Probation and parole officers work effectively with a broad spectrum of Virginia’s law enforcement and legal communities. But their most important duty involves advising and directing returning citizens.
“Our officers play an unheralded, behind-the-scenes role that has a tremendous positive impact on long-term public safety, and they deserve credit for helping the Department attain the lowest recidivism rate in the nation,” Director Clarke said.
Virginia’s legislature enacted a formal statewide probation and parole system on October 1, 1942, creating 21 districts with 24 field officers. Today, Virginia has approximately 600 probation and parole officers and 150 senior officers serving 43 different districts and supervising approximately 60,000 offenders statewide.
More information on the VADOC can be found at www.vadoc.virginia.gov.