Orael Institute, London

Custody and Detention Officer – Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship

About The Course

To work in custody and detention is to ensure that individuals are held in a secure, safe decent and fair environment and work as part of a team to ensure that the safety of everyone in custody and detention centres is a priority.

You will operate in a secure environment such as Prisons, Detention Centres, Custodial Establishments and Custodial Services are unique and often challenging places to work. The environment could vary from a Women’s unit or treatment prison to a male resettlement prison.

The people in your care will have a variety of different needs and display varied It is your role to work to ensure those individuals are treated with dignity and respect and helped to find a new way of life whilst maintaining a safe, secure and structured environment. These environments rely and operate on a routine, which you’ll need to be part of, however, they can often be volatile challenging places to work and officers must be able and agile enough to respond quickly to a variety of incidents whilst maintaining professional standards throughout.

You will also play a key role in the rehabilitation of those in your care, acting to build commitment to change to reduce re-offending and to coach people in skills such as problem-solving and management of emotions. You will be expected to positively influence the lives of those in your care, by working with them on a daily basis in ensuring they take responsibility for their actions and welfare. This may include maintaining links with their families, addressing offending behaviours which may have contributed to their situation and seeking a positive resolution to circumstances that will affect their re-integration into society.

Officers are front-line staff who have a duty to enforce and uphold legal decisions and follow process and procedure with integrity, honesty and professionalism. Roles in this environment will involve working a variety of shifts 365 days a year including evenings, nights, weekends and holiday periods. Examples of roles in this sector are Prison Officer, Custodial Officer, Detention Officer and Escorting Officer.

Duration: 12-18 Months
Location: Workplace and the institute
Sector: Public Services

As a Custody and Detention officer you must demonstrate an understanding of:

  • The tasks and responsibilities of the role such as keeping individuals secure, preparing them for release, authorised physical control and restraint. Including how that is relevant to the context in which you are working, how it fits within the organisation and how it interacts with other relevant organisations and agencies such as the NHS and Police
  • Policies and procedures relevant to the custodial environment in which you are working and how to operate these within the remit of your role
  • The key and critical aspects of security, how they contribute to the overall security of the establishment and wider service
  • The causes of crime, and how you can help people turn their lives around
  • The importance of having and demonstrating the values and behaviours that keep custodial environments safe and enable the people in them to concentrate on rehabilitation
  • Rights and responsibilities of those in custodial care or detention
  • Recognise and understand the impact of mental health issues on individuals and be able to access support as appropriate. An example of this would be sign posting effective support services, which may assist in the prevention of self-harm by others
  • The importance of caring for vulnerable people who are at risk of self-harm or violence using recognised procedures and good interpersonal skills
  • How you recognise the signs of substance misuse and its impact on individuals and be able to access support as appropriate
  • The key principles and theories of violence reduction
  • Understand the behaviour patterns of an individual during
  • The importance of good communications, the use of different communication styles and knowing when to use them. An example of this might be how you motivate individuals to take part in organised activities to address offending behaviour
  • Understand health and safety procedures and how to reduce the risk of harm or injury to yourself, your colleagues and those is your care by using the positive risk management processes
  • How to search individuals, vehicles and buildings in the custodial setting

Apprentice’s must be over 18 due to legal restrictions.

The Apprentice must already hold a level 2 qualification in literacy and numeracy or achieve it by prior to gateway assessment.

Industry specific requirements: Apprentices must attain the Ministry of Justice Commissioners license to practice prior to gateway assessment.

Apprenticeships are assessed by classroom study coursework and assessments along with on-the-job practicals.
On completion of this course, you can progress onto further study in this field or into a career in the public services sector.

We recommend you apply at least three months before the programme starts to guarantee your place. The application form will take approximately 15 to 30 minutes to complete.

We’ll acknowledge receipt of your application by email within 48 hours, if it’s received during normal working hours (Mon-Fri – 09:00-18:00 GMT). We will review and respond to your application within two working days. We do this in order of receipt and acceptance is not automatic.

Yes. We can hold a provisional place for you for up to two weeks, but be aware that completed applications take priority and programmes often fill up several months in advance. You can reserve a place online, by phone or by email. Tel: +44 749 199 3874 Email: admin@oraelinstitute.com

The programme is taught in English, so a good working knowledge of the language is essential. If English is not your first language, we may ask you for evidence of your proficiency.

If you have any more questions, please read our FAQs here.
Read our full terms and conditions.



*Fees are subject to change and subject to meeting certain requirements.
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