please help!!!! BOP or CA state prison?

  1. Can anybody please help me, i am RN, just was accepted by BOP in south CA and for CA state prison in N. CA!
    I have a few questions, which benefits better CA state or BOP federal, including retirement, health care covereage after retirement , pay , of course better CA state, what possibility with overtime in BOP, what career opportunity with BOP? what difference between this two environment, I would be appreciated any help with any information, because I got 2-3 weeks to decide......please help me with any info.....
  2. Visit paul2000 profile page

    About paul2000

    Joined: Aug '10; Posts: 2


  3. by   mariahas4kids
    In my opinion....I would rather work for the federal government rather than the state right now. You never hear of the feds laying off people or implementing pay cuts because of budget issues, and I know that CA is in a world of hurt with their budget. (So is Washington State, where I am).

    Usually when you work for the government (either Fed or State) you get regular yearly raises (step raises), paid sick and vacation time, good retirement with employer matching and usually educational reimbursement. Now I do not know if this is true in CA, and some of these things are being cut here (they are trying to freeze wages and now do not reimburse for educational costs).

    On the other hand, I really enjoy working for corrections. Have you visited the facilities? Work environment may play an important roll as well. good luck!!
  4. by   SummitRN
    I've heard the benefits and pay for BOP are simply outstanding... but the person who told me is a total jerk... so... talk to both employers and find out what they have to offer.
  5. by   lkmrn123
    BOP are you a BSN RN you can apply for USPHS (US Public Health Service). You would get Active Duty pay and benefits (free health care, 30 days leave, housing allowance, and GI Bill for education, VA loan for home). PHS will move you from place to place (the best way to move up is to move on).
  6. by   Multicollinearity
    I would probably take the California job for the high $$$$$s unless you are really interested in looong term Federal employment with the BOP. Who knows how long California's Plata situation will last, though, with the high pay rates for correctional RNs.
  7. by   paul2000
    does anybody know difference between federal and CA state benefits?
  8. by   lkmrn123
    State benefits vary, the Feds are pretty well regulated, go to and look at the benefits of working for the feds. I have worked Federal, State, Local/city and county.

    Just depends on your needs, I have a job with state university system and one of the benefits is 50% off tuition for dependents, I have 2 in college so this is a great benefit.

    If you transfer to other departments within the feds your time carries over as long as you are career conditional/permanent. Not all the time with states. You have to know ""corrections" w/ feds is not just BOP, they also detain w/ ICE, the US Marshals, FBI, CIA and others have "law enforecment" needs for nurses. Also the feds have an extensive occupational health system, since ALL federal law enforcement and many federal agencies have mandatory medical surveillance physicals.

    The state agencies will vary with type of benefits, if you are a teacher, firefighter, police officer, nurse all have different benefits depending on the agency, you work for. You have do do some homework for each job you are applying to, not an easy answer.
  9. by   caliotter3
    I would also go federal. There is too much talk of getting rid of CA state employees. Sooner or later that will affect the Corrections Dept., no matter how powerful the union seems to be.
  10. by   tenra
    Go with the Feds. This is your best bet with the economy situation.Beware of new private prison groups. Some have gotten themselves in a financial hole resulting in no raises,trying to cut salaries and cutting insurance and retirements benefits back, Believe me,this happened to us,including officers, nearly a year ago.
  11. by   jaxnsanjose
    I don't know about BOP but the CA prison I work at has tons of opportunity for OT for RN's including being ordered over whenever they deem fit but you also have to remember you get 3 furloughs a month. We don't actually get to take furlough Fridays like the rest of the state, we work them and get furlough hours to use when we can.
  12. by   RosesRN
    bump...keep the info coming! thanks!
  13. by   Lukeinashland
    Hello. I'm an RN with 10+years experience and have been working for the VA for the past 2 years. But I've recently considered switching to the BOP.
    Some of the facilities that have contacted me and expressed interest in my working for them is FCC Victorville, CA, Lompoc, CA, Bastrop Tx and SeaTac in Seattle, WA. Any fellow RN's out there work at or know anything about any of these facilities and the areas that they're in?
  14. by   GoBuckeyez10
    Luke, if you go BOP I would first ask them what their staffing level is currently. Not nurse to patient ratio, however, if they expect to have 100 RN's staffed, how many are they currently short. A very high % of Federal prisons are working short right now, some as low as 60%. We are around 15% short where I work right now and it's only causing more to leave due to burn out. I am not familiar with any of the locations you listed. Good luck.
    (and remember you have to do 20 years inside the fence to get you Law Enforcement retirement)