Correctional officer earnings by seniority

Approximate values based on highest and lowest earning segments.

Correctional officer salary by state

State Name Average Salary
Florida $40,291
Texas $37,070

How much does a Correctional Officer earn?

Many correctional officers may increase their salaries by identifying the most lucrative geographical regions, obtaining strong academic or professional credentials, seeking out the highest paying employers and staying with the same employer for the duration of their career. Professionals with a wider skill set in psychology, counseling and behaviour management are likely to succeed in this demanding career and rise to the level of supervisor or warden.

There are four primary employers in the United States of correctional officers - the federal government, the state government, the local government, and private prisons.

States with larger prison populations and more robust economies tend to pay higher salaries, such as New Jersey, California, New York, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. California and New York offers high correctional officer salaries to attract qualified professionals who are willing to work in stressful environments where there’s a relatively high turnover rate. Therefore, the higher salaries in these states usually reflect additional responsibilities.

One of the greatest factors in determining salary is the number of years of employment. Depending upon the employer, the salary of a corrections officer may escalate quickly after reaching certain milestones. Supervisors and managers do enjoy significant bumps in salary after a given period of service. Most prison facilities allow senior officers to have first pick of assignments, which allows them to choose positions that present less risk of injury.

How do correctional officer salaries compare to similar careers?

Correctional officers earn about the same as related careers in the United States. On average, they make less than event planners but more than librarians.

Career Median Salary
Event planner salary $33K
Paralegal salary $36K
Piano tuner salary $37K
Ambulance dispatcher salary $33K
Garbage collector salary $36K
Correctional officer salary $35K
Wedding planner salary $32K
Insurance sales agent salary $33K
Nail technician salary $27K
Librarian salary $36K