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At the Office of the Sheriff of New South Wales, we conduct law enforcement, security and support activities to ensure the safe and successful operation of state courts. We also administer the NSW jury service system, a massive operation which involves more than 200,000 citizens each year.
More than 400 specially trained Sheriff's Officers, court officers and clerical staff are employed at 58 Sheriff's offices across the state.
Sworn uniformed Sheriff’s Officers have law enforcement, security and other court-related responsibilities under the direction and supervision of the Officer-in-Charge. Their duties include:
The role offers an opportunity for flexibility, as a Sheriff’s Officer can be required to move between different locations to meet work demands.
"The work we do ensures the safety of our officers, as well as the general public and the judicial system."
DCJ Careers: Sheriff's Officers
I don't think anybody's that clear about what sheriffs do until they need a Sheriff they just think of cowboy movies that we're going to have a horse ride into town that's not what we actually do though the Sheriff's Office is a law enforcement organisation that does civil law enforcement and court security operations we protect the court system try to make it run smoothly and enact any orders that the court make we protect everybody in the court upholding the justice system is very important to the community and I believe everyone should respect the law the work we do ensures the safety of our officers as well as the general public and the judicial system there is lots and lots of training and endless amount of training there are no two days that are the same in the sheriff's office before I was a sheriff I was a farmer something completely different I was studying at university before joining the sheriff office I was into 80.
I never thought i would be involved in law enforcement my persistence since joining the office of the sheriff has really seen me travel a long way well a sheriff can come from any background it doesn't matter what you did before there is no restriction if you are a male or female whatever category you are and it doesn't matter the role as a sheriff's officer focuses on teamwork determination resilience persistence and passion we all do the same job we all need to back each other up we're all part of the same team.
I think to be a sheriff you need to have compassion and empathy as well I think everyone that's coming through the doors isn't always coming for a good reason I have seen people in their darkest hours and face a lot of adversity you do see a lot of people in some terrible situations everybody deserves your respect when they come through the courtroom door my role at the moment has given me a wealth of knowledge it's a secure job there's room for progression there's always opportunities to do other roles whether it be for a short amount of time or a longer period of time coming to work daily that's my favorite thing to do I'm proud to be a sheriff i go to work with other people who are proud to be a Sheriff i feel part of a team it has been the most rewarding career that i have ever been involved in.
At times, the duties of a Sheriff’s Officer can be physical and may involve running, bending, lifting heavy objects and being able to navigate obstacles in tight spaces. Sheriff’s Officers may also need to use self-defence and control/restraint techniques during a critical incident.
To make sure you can perform the role and functions of a Sheriff’s Officer, you will be required to undertake a medical and physical assessment.
The medical assessment is designed to assess your overall health and check if you have any medical conditions that may impede your ability to safely perform the duties of a Sheriff’s Officer. This can include testing your core, upper body, lower limb, grip and overall strength and mobility. As the role requires the use and correct interpretation of X-ray scanning technology and colour displays, normal colour vision is mandated and your colour vision will be assessed.
Mental resilience is also a requirement of the role as you can be regularly exposed to explicit information and footage relayed in court hearings including child and sexual assault matters.
It’s important to prepare for the fitness assessment well in advance as you may only have one opportunity to successfully complete it. You should aim to be fit enough to complete:
Physical assessment - Office of the Sheriff of NSW
As part of the process of becoming a sheriff's officer a pre-employment medical assessment will be undertaken to assess your medical and mental resilience capability. At times the duties of the sheriff's officer can be physical and may involve running, bending, lifting heavy objects and being able to navigate obstacles in tight spaces.
Sheriff's officers may need to use self-defence and control restraint techniques during the course of their employment, the medical assessment is designed to assess your overall health status and whether you have any medical conditions which may impede your ability to safely perform the duties of the sheriff's officer. The components of the medical assessment are directly related to the requirements of the sheriff's officer and are designed to test your core upper body, lower limb grip and overall strength mobility. It includes push-ups, lunges, deep squats, hover, and strength tests as the role is required to use x-ray machinery.
It is mandatory for officers to have no colour blindness, mental resilience is also a requirement of the sheriff's officer, as they can be regularly exposed to explicit information and footage relayed during court hearings, including child and sexual assault matters, at times this can be difficult for even the most physically and mentally competent person. You'll be provided with support from the Department and your colleagues in managing challenging situations.
You will also be required to complete details of your medical history which may require us seeking further information from your medical practitioners if required. This will be undertaken following your physical assessment; the best advice we can give you is to be honest in your disclosures when you are asked to complete the relevant screening and consent forms.
It is important that you prepare for the fitness assessment well in advance, as a second opportunity may not be provided should you fail to meet the required standards. We encourage you to discuss this with your doctor prior to commencing any training and fitness regime, if you do not feel you are currently fit enough to successfully complete components of the medical assessment, you may wish to reconsider applying at this time and take the time to focus on your health and wellbeing including fitness.
The office of the sheriff regularly undertakes recruitment, normally twice per year, if you are not successful in your overall assessments as a sheriff's officer, you will not be reconsidered for another 12 months. As a self-assessment you should aim for 25 push-ups, 90-second plank, 20 sit-ups with feet held or under furniture, grip strength, walking or running, a general level of cardiovascular health is required, and workers should be walking at fast pace for at least 30 minutes. Three times a week push ups provide an indication of upper body strength, and endurance as well as stabilizing abdominal strength.
The standards provide an indication that an officer has the basic capacity to support their own body weight, carrying weight or counter against resistance, particularly in circumstances where protection of one's self or others may be required. Males start the push-up position with your toes on the ground, feet together, arms shoulder-width apart with palms flat, the back should be straight and head looking forward or down and arms fully extended, this is the up position. From the up position, the arms bend to a 90-degree angle, from the shoulder to elbow, the body should remain generally in a straight line and parallel to the ground, this is the down position keeping the body generally in a straight line, the arms are then extended so that the body returns to the up position, returning to the up position constitutes one repetition, you should aim for 25 push-ups.
Females will be given the option of doing this with their knees on the ground, start the push-up position with the knees on the ground, arms shoulder-width apart and palms flat, the back should be straight, and the head looking forward or down, and arms fully extended, this is the up position. From the up position the arms bend to 90-degree angle, from the shoulder to elbow. The body should remain generally in a straight line, this is the down position, keep the body in a straight line, the arms are then extended so the body returns to the up position. Returning to the up position, constitutes one repetition you should aim for 25 push-ups.
Planking demonstrates overall core strength, which is important as sheriff's officers wear a vest and appointments which weigh around seven kilos. Poor core strength would result in lower back issues and fatigue. Lie face down, legs straight out behind you, knees and feet together, bend your elbows with your forearms facing each other, support your weight on your forearms, brace your abs and prop your body off the ground. Forming a straight line, from your head through to your heels, you should aim for 90 second plank.
The grip strength test measures the maximum isometric strength of the hand and forearm muscles, these standards provide indication that candidates have the basic capacity to grip, and utilize specific items related to the custodial environment, such as handcuffs, battens and keys. Grip strength is also a key requirement during any incident that may involve the physical restraint of an offender.
Start position, hold the hand grip in the hand to be tested, the base should rest on the first metacarpal heel of the palm, where the handle should rest upon the middle of the four remaining fingers, stand straight to attention, with feet slightly apart and arms placed alongside the body. The hand grip should be facing out and must not contact the body or clothing. Squeeze the grip with maximum isometric force and maintain it for three to five seconds, no other body movement is allowed, repeat with the other hand. There are many exercises that can be used to improve your grip strength ability, we recommend researching on the internet and having consultation with your doctor to find an exercise that suits, you should aim at reaching 35 kilos per hand.
29 Nov 2022
We acknowledge Aboriginal people as the First Nations Peoples of NSW and pay our respects to Elders past, present, and future.
Informed by lessons of the past, Department of Communities and Justice is improving how we work with Aboriginal people and communities. We listen and learn from the knowledge, strength and resilience of Stolen Generations Survivors, Aboriginal Elders and Aboriginal communities.
You can access our apology to the Stolen Generations.