Pretrial, Probation and Parole Supervision Week celebrated in South Lake Tahoe


In South Tahoe Now by Paula Peterson


SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. – Pretrial, Probation and Parole Supervision (PPPS) Week is July 17-21, and to get the week started off, El Dorado County’s Chief Probation Officer Brian Richart cooked a big breakfast for staff on Monday.

Richart’s department is 122 strong with staff on both the west and east slopes of the county. Since 2014 Richart has cooked up a big breakfast for staff, and he will repeat what he did in South Lake Tahoe on Monday and again on Thursday on the West Slope.

Probation is about creating relationships with people and building trust, said Wood. She said only once their clients’ basic needs are met can they be successful.

Richart said many don’t understand what PPPS staff do on a daily basis. He said people see a badge and a gun and hear the word ‘probation’ but those things are a small aspect of the job.

“This is a noble profession and it’s the connection and relationships,” Richart said of what makes them successful. “We are effective only with solid relationships,” he said.

Those in the probation field are a mix of about a dozen different professions including social work and policing. Richart said with a week like the PPPS Week, they can use education to inform the public about their roles in the community.

Richart said they follow a medically-based model of rehabilitation, accept what science says and implement it. He’s been with El Dorado County since 2013, coming to the area after serving in Alameda County and Shasta County. He said the field was limited by policy and history, but by removing those barriers and just having the outer perimeter set, staff can thrive.

The result?

“The best probation department in California,” said Richart.

On Monday afternoon, members of the Probation Department went to serve at Bread & Broth’s Monday Meal. On Tuesday, the West Slope staff will have a blood drive and a proclamation will be read at the Board of Supervisor’s meeting. On Wednesday there will be an awards banquet where staff is recognized by their peers for going above and beyond to help justice-involved individuals and the community. Thursday is the West Slope pancake breakfast with ice cream parties on Friday.