Job security and a good health plan aren’t enough anymore. Connecticut police departments, like others across the nation, are struggling to attract and keep good people, reports the Hartford Courant. The Connecticut Police Chiefs Association has produced a video that touts the benefits of working in law enforcement in the state. With military action under way in Iraq and Afghanistan, many reservists, enlisted soldiers and national guardsmen are on active duty, effectively removing them from the overall candidate pool. The Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in New York and Washington have helped make police work less attractive.
Phoenix police are recruiting heavily in universities with criminal justice programs, offering bonuses of $3,000 to $7,000 for recruits with college degrees and extra pay for bilingual officers. They also have invested in a television commercial and advertised with national publications such as USA Today and the Military Times. The department has decided to show more tolerance for candidates who have experimented with drugs or had a drunken-driving conviction in the past. Phoenix, which employs three full-time recruiting officers and backs them up with about a dozen detectives to expedite background checks, is co-sponsoring a regional career expo in April. Police departments from California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, and Colorado will take part.