Job seekers are swamping federal, state and local police agencies during the economic downturn, a reversal from recent years when departments struggled to find qualified recruits. USA Today says police chiefs expect the new prospects, many of them highly experienced and victims of corporate cutbacks, will be better suited to fill a range of public safety jobs, from dispatchers to beat cops.
The FBI, which said in December it would hire about 3,000 agents and staffers, is sorting through 227,000 applications, the largest such response in its history. Among the usual accountants, military veterans and recent college graduates are computer technicians and financial executives. “This year, there is great appeal in government work,” says Gwendolyn Hubbard, who is overseeing the bureau’s hiring for jobs paying $35,000 to $153,000, with health care and retirement plans. “People are attracted by the benefits and job security.”