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About working with the Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention

The Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention (DAJD) offers rewarding careers with competitive pay, strong benefits, and opportunities for advancement.

Join our team

Corrections and juvenile detention officers can receive $12,000 to $25,000 signing bonuses.

All employees can receive generous time off, tuition reimbursement, special benefits for veterans, and more.

View current DAJD job opportunities

The Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention (DAJD) contributes to the public safety of the people of King County and Washington State by operating safe, secure, and humane detention facilities and community corrections programs. We are committed to building a diverse, inclusive, and equitable workplace. 

In addition, we are committed to recruiting and maintaining a quality workforce that shares our guiding principles. We are collaborative, service-oriented, and accountable.

You can join our team at DAJD through 3 career paths:

  • Corrections officer
  • Juvenile detention officer
  • Non-uniformed personnel roles

Corrections officers work at our adult jails in Seattle and Kent. Juvenile detention officers work with youth at the Clark Children and Family Justice Center in Seattle. Officers can earn signing bonuses of $12,000 or $25,000 based on experience, as well as other benefits. 

DAJD is always looking for qualified people to join our team in non-uniformed roles. These include administrative, casework, medical roles, and more.

Below, learn more about each of our 3 career paths, benefits, the hiring process, and opportunities for veterans.

Corrections officers

As a corrections officer, you will ensure the safety and welfare of adults in detention for adults in secure detention. We provide ongoing training to help you build further knowledge and skills for a career in corrections. Applicants with corrections and/or criminal justice experience are the most competitive. 

Learn more about the corrections officer job description, benefits, and application process

Download the King County corrections officer job description

Visit the corrections officer job listing



Officer LaVance Davis shares his experiences as a Corrections Officer

Juvenile detention officers

As a juvenile detention officer, you will work with youth under the age of 18 in our secure detention facility. We provide ongoing training to help you build further knowledge and skills for your career. Applicants with corrections and/or criminal justice experience, as well as experience working with youth, are the most competitive.

Learn more about the juvenile detention officer job description, benefits, and application process

Download the King County juvenile detention officer job description

Visit the juvenile detentions officer job listing



Corrections Supervisor Randy Green discusses his work with youth

Non-uniformed personnel

DAJD employs people from many different professional backgrounds. We offer careers in casework, food services, payroll, medical, administrative roles, and more. Each position at DAJD comes with outstanding benefits and chances to advance your career.

Learn more about the types of non-uniformed jobs DAJD offers, benefits, and the application process

View open DAJD job listings


King County offers a highly competitive compensation and benefits package. Benefits include but are not limited to: 

  • Medical, dental, and vision insurance for employees and eligible family members
  • Life and disability insurance
  • Retirement plans
  • ORCA transit pass
  • 12 paid holidays per year
  • Generous vacation and paid sick leave
  • Paid maternal, paternal, family and medical, and volunteer leave

Additional benefits can include:

  • Uniforms and equipment
  • Flexible spending accounts
  • Educational incentives and benefits
  • On-site gyms and fitness centers

Visit the King County benefits, payroll, and retirement page to learn more. 

Incentives for newly hired officers

Newly hired corrections officers and juvenile detention officers may be eligible for signing bonuses of $12,000 or $25,000 based on experience. Lateral hires from out of state also may be eligible for $5,000 in moving expenses.

Learn more about benefits for corrections officers

Learn more about benefits for juvenile detention officers

Above: Officer Michelle Helpenstell on why DAJD is a good fit for veterans

Military and veterans

King County recognizes the value of military service. DAJD is the Pacific Northwest's largest jail system. We are proud to employ veterans, including those who actively serve our nation as they transition to civilian life. 

Learn more about employment for veterans, reservists, and National Guard members in King County 


Accommodations for active military service

Additional benefits DAJD provides related to military deployment or training drills: 

  • Up to 21 days of paid military leave per military fiscal year (October 1 to September 30)
  • Differential pay while on active duty
  • Medical, dental, vision, and basic life insurance for a military leave beyond 30 calendar days
  • Vacation and sick leave accruals while on military leave
  • Military reservists are permitted to miss work to participate in weekend drills

The hiring process

If you are interested in working with DAJD, we encourage you to apply. 

  1. You will need to create a free account at If you already have an account, log into your account.
  2. Fill out the application. Completion of a King County employment application and a DAJD supplemental questionnaire is required. Online applications are preferred. Follow application instructions carefully. 

View open DAJD job listings

For more information, visit the King County jobs page.

For further assistance with the online application process, call NeoGov Customer Support toll free: 1-877-204-4442.


Corrections and juvenile detention officers

The process of becoming a corrections or juvenile detention officer may require more steps than for non-uniformed roles.

Learn more about applying to become a corrections officer

Learn more about applying to become a juvenile detention officer

Because of the nature of the work, there are some reasons why we cannot hire candidates for corrections and juvenile detention officer positions.


Disqualifying factors - criminal history

DAJD must disqualify a Corrections Officer or JDO candidate who has ever been convicted of:

  • A felony offense;
  • A gross misdemeanor domestic violence offense;
  • An offense with sexual motivation as defined in RCW 9.94A.030;
  • An offense under chapter 9A.44 RCW; or
  • A federal or out-of-state offense comparable to an offense listed above

Exceptions: In some cases, the applicant may, but does not have to be, disqualified for convictions when:

  • It was adjudicated as a juvenile and the record was sealed, or
  • It was disclosed at the time of application for initial certification, and it did not occur while the applicant was a certified peace officer, or
  • The applicant was granted a full and unconditional pardon.

The following convictions are additionally disqualifying and supersede anything listed above:

  • Any adult felony convictions involving crimes against a person or violence.
  • Any adult conviction for any crime classified as a Domestic Violence offense.
  • Any adult felony drug convictions within last five (5) years.
  • Is prohibited from possessing weapons by state or federal law or by a permanent court order entered after a hearing.
  • Has been terminated by or separated from their employer after engaging in, or was found by a court to have engaged in, the use of force which resulted in death or serious injury and the use of force violated the law;
  • Has been terminated by or otherwise separated from their employer after witnessing, or found by a court to have witnessed, another officer's use of excessive force and was in a position to intervene to end the excessive use of force and failed to do so or failed to report the use of excessive force in accordance with agency policy or law;
  • Has been terminated by or otherwise separated while knowingly making, or found by a court to have knowingly made, misleading, deceptive, untrue, or fraudulent representations in the practice of being a corrections officer including, but not limited to, committing perjury, filing false reports, hiding evidence, or failing to report exonerating information.
  • The applicant is listed on the applicable state child abuse registries.
  • Any candidate with an active (currently named as a respondent in) and non-temporary No- Contact, Protection, or Harassment DV Order.


Potentially disqualifying factors

The Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention may additionally disqualify any candidate whose background includes the following:


Drug history - considered on a case-by-case basis

Purchase, sale, transport, possession or distribution of ANY illegal drug substance, to include non- prescribed medications, in the past three (3) years.

Other drug use outside these standards will be subject to additional review and may be disqualifying.

For the purposes of this standard, illegal drugs are defined in RCW 69.50.401. Examples may include the following but are not limited to:












Hallucinogenic drugs




Angel Dust

GHB, Rohypnol or MDMA



Huffing Paint or N02


Club Drugs


Psilocybin or mushrooms



Conduct - considered on a case-by-case basis

Engaged in conduct including, but not limited to, verbal statements, writings, online posts, recordings, and gestures, involving prejudice or discrimination against a person on the basis of race, religion, creed, color, national origin, immigration status, disability, genetic information, marital status, sex, gender identity, gender expression, age, sexual orientation or military and veteran status.


Criminal History - considered on a case-by-case basis

Convictions for any of the following:

  • A felony offense;
  • A gross misdemeanor domestic violence offense;
  • An offense with sexual motivation as defined in RCW 9.94A.030; An offense under chapter 9A.44 RCW; or a federal or out-of-state offense comparable to an offense listed in the RCW 43.101.105 and its subsections.
  • Any adult conviction of DUI in the past three (3) years.
  • Any adult conviction of Attempting to Elude or Hit & Run Attended. Affiliation with one or more extremist organizations.
  • Participation or affiliation related to a street gang or security threat group in the last three (3) years. Applicants is a "Criminal street gang associate or member" per RCW 9.94A.030 in the Criminal street gang database per RCW 43.43.762.
  • Adult misdemeanor convictions and all felony convictions outside of these standards are subject to disqualification.
  • Any intimate contact with inmate(s), or detained individuals while employed or contracted by a criminal justice agency. Being terminated, resigned, or retired while under investigation by, or with an administrative finding from, a criminal justice agency for sexual abuse under PREA.
  • Per RCW 10.93.150 any Brady (Impeachment List) reportable convictions or omissions for offense underlying acts for which that officer's name was placed on the list.

An applicant's criminal record, including all arrests, prosecutions, deferred prosecutions, "Alford" pleas, UCMJ violations, and non-conviction information will be thoroughly assessed and may be grounds for disqualification.


Appearance - considered on a case-by-case basis

Tattoos that are obscene, gang-related or racially insensitive are not permitted. The Department Director or designee shall make the final determination on whether a prospective staff member’s tattoo is permitted.


Military discharge status - considered on a case-by-case basis

Including dishonorable discharges, Other Than Honorable Conditions, and Misconduct (Drug Abuse), Misconduct (Serious Offense), Misconduct (Other), Pattern of Misconduct.


How to appeal a denial

If you have been denied employment and you can appeal the denial decision. You have 30 days from the date of denial to submit your appeal. Follow these steps:

  • Write a letter/email explaining why you want to appeal the decision. Include any information you think will help in reversing the decision.
  • Send the letter to your DAJD Human Resources contact, or email
  • Your appeal will be forwarded to DAJD management.
  • Once a decision is made you will be contacted by DAJD Human Resources representative.
  • If you have not received a response from DAJD Human Resources after 10 business days, contact your DAJD Human Resources representative. 
  •  For more information, call DAJD Human Resources: 206-477-2400