As a clinical social worker who provides services to the medical department of the Gila County jail, I have had an opportunity to observe the professional development of that institution over the past five years.
It's important that the community know that local young people as will as those changing careers are being offered solid professional development in the career field of corrections that, however unfortunately, is growing and thus offering multiple opportunities both in and beyond this community.
During Sheriff John Armer's tenure, the development of improved screening of applicants, training, and the potential for progression up through the ranks of career-oriented officers has been significant.
This is a model of cultivating local human resources that might well be modeled by other community agencies. We are a rural area that often has trouble recruiting qualified specialists. The sheriff has found a way to involve that people who are committed to their generations of families and want to continue to live here.
The jail also protects and serves the community. Having lived and practiced as a psychotherapist in Globe for more that 20 years, I am aware of how many families have been touched by loved ones who find their lives spent for days or months in the county jail.
Incarceration is a consequence and punishment. The professional staff being developed in Gila County jail works to assure those both passing through and the community surrounding that facility are safe.
Both professionally and personally I believe we need Sheriff Armer's continuing leadership.
Jeanette Shapiro, Globe