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Recruiting Shortage Means Officer Safety Issues For Agencies

Recruiting Shortage Means Officer Safety Issues For Agencies

Open jobs and recruiting challenges mean some Des Moines-area police department leaders worry about officers becoming strained or burned out — or worse.

Ankeny Police Chief Gary Mikulec said his officers still respond quickly to every 911 call — but with the department short-staffed, sometimes there may be just two officers on a call that would ideally have three. Fewer officers on a potentially dangerous call could affect officers’ safety, he said.

“That worries me immensely. That keeps me up at night, worrying about the safety of officers,” Mikulec said.

The register reports that the Des Moines Police Department has 23 vacancies out of the 372 sworn officers it is authorized to have. The Ankeny Police Department has seven job openings out of the 60 total sworn officers it is authorized to have.

Local police officials say there are several reasons for the challenges in recruiting, including concerns about dangers of police work, competition with other law enforcement agencies or private-sector jobs, and high-profile cases nationally that can damage the reputation of police in general.

Recruiting shortages around the country is exactly why Law Officer launched the Partner Program earlier this year.

“The program is “outside the box” and like nothing we have even seen in the profession before,” said Law Officer Editor In Chief Travis Yates.

“The energy and resources spent on the road recruiting is enormous and for the first time, this program enables agencies to get the candidates they need by never leaving their city,” Yates reiterated.

You can find out about the Law Officer Partner Program here.



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