As I've stated in other posts...
I believe squairly that Corrections officers, and detention deputies are a level of law enforcement. Like off duty police officers, off duty corrections officers face similar if not greater personal danger as a result of their duties.
First off There are no good guys within the prison/jail population as there are in the community at large. Corrections officers are imersed in a society of people who have already served notice of their anti-social bend. Further corrections officers are outnumbered by the hundreds to one. In order to maintain a safe productive work envioronment for officers, staff, and inmates these officers must enforce rule's and laws and control violence without firearms for the most part.
Given the proliferation of gangs within the prison proper, and their reach and ability to effect peoples life outside the prison. I believe that Corrections officers should be allowed by law to be armed.
OK End of rant. As a corrections officer or detention deputy should make every effort to have the ability to protect himself and his family. I think the kind, calibre, or make of his weapon should be personal, and not taken lightly.
A poster mentioned that a corrections officer who had not abused anyone would have nothing to worry about. Thats just silly. As I mentioned a gang may want to send a message by harming a random or particular officer. Again I may have a better understanding of the criminal element based on my few years in law enforcement. Criminals DO NOT!!! follow the same linier logic that most of us would call normal. More than a few inmates suffer from various emotional, and or mental disorders and may be a danger to all law enforcement but particularly corrections officers. Remember... The only thing keeping these people in that big gray place and away from all of us is the corrections officers.
Keeping the post on track about firearms. I was fortunate to live in a state that recognized these issues, and corrections officers, local, county, and state were sworn peace officers. The local officers I knew and shot with mostly carried the same off duty .38 spl chiefs, det specials, and sp101' s as the local cops carried. (NYC department of Corrections) The Dept issued 4" HB model 10 revolvers to officers in transport, and I think 2" model 10's to investigators. But I believe all officers had the choice to use their own personal gun. They also had long arms, shot guns, and automatic weapons. Later when the NYPD transitioned to automatic pistols, so the the Department of corrections, and I saw Glock 19's as the replacements for the 4" model 10's. The State Dept of corrections I believe were also issued model 10's. Most of the guys I knew from State purchase their own model 10's. Not sure about the various counties.