Rodger is a Services and Programs Officer at Shortland Correctional Centre, in Cessnock. He is also a Mental Health Nurse at Hunter New England Mental Health.
“I started in 1991 as an Alcohol and Other Drugs Worker at Maitland Gaol,” he said. “I have been at Shortland pretty much since it opened about eight years ago.
“I like the role, as it utilises many of my skills, with inmates and staff.”
Rodger’s typical day starts with arriving at work and seeing which staff members are available and their roles for the day.
“I like my job,” he said. “I am making a difference in small ways.”
Rodger said the qualities required in his role include being a good listener, having a knowledge of mental health issues and empathy.
He admits some of the more troubled inmates he works with require a particular “empathic style”.
Rodger’s role is vital in rehabilitating inmates in the NSW correctional system.