Police Recruitment Efforts Raising Rosters?

Police Recruitment Efforts Raising Rosters?

By Stephen Owsinski

Law enforcement agency recruitment efforts persist…but are the ranks rising after the anti-police party mauled morale and spurred an exodus of cops?

While signals still echo a depletion of the nation’s law enforcement officers, with police department and sheriff’s office recruiters compelled to go outside the usual/local boundaries (some recently flew to Puerto Rico to recruit island cops) to influence potential candidates’ applications, local recruitment drives garner some traction.

Albeit anecdotally, daily scoping of fresh batches of police recruits/cadets among law enforcement organizations indicate seats occupied by academy training uniforms filled by able-bodied folks donning concentrated facial expressions in the classroom session, absorbing the academics of police work.

Synonymously, the requisite physical conditioning attributes are being exercised on tarmacs and grassy fields, whereby recruits are enduring physical fitness demands, firearms training, and emergency vehicle operations, among other grueling dynamics.

(Photo courtesy of the Worcester Police Department.)

Sweat equity will pay off for cadets prepping to assume the crucial public safety role but the landscape has changed, with the seeming hesitancy of LEOs to go hands-on for fear of being ensnared for doing what they’ve been trained to do. The NYPD depicts examples whereby some beat cops seem trepidatious when raving lunatics act as if they own the mega-metropolis.

This is born of the litany of lawsuits and head-scratching prosecutions for doing police work: urgently responding to reports involving mayhem, nabbing crazily unpredictable people whose violent tendencies stink up the scene, with cops encountering monstrous behaviors, adapting and re-adapting by the nanosecond, striving to meet the goal of safety and apprehend malicious actors, without losing life and limb (of all parties), going off-duty with that conflagration crowding the cranium space, replaying it all, loop after loop, trusting you gave your all…

Thereafter, usually out there on the crime beat, you learn you are in the reticle of an idiosyncratic district attorney who jollies on pursuing splinter-and-paper-cut-level pettiness against police versus pursuing what they were sworn to do: fight for the good guys/gals and the citizens victimized by undeniable evildoers and their thirst for criminality, the latter trumpeted by illicit-minded cop-haters, some of whom boldly advertise their ilk.

(Photo courtesy of the Irvine Police Department.)

Not exactly encouraging for police aspirants waiting in the wing, watching legacy media fire cannonballs at the fundamentally perilous profession they are seeking to forge.

The young lady with the anti-police sweatshirt (depicted above) was apprehended stealing car parts, directly dislodging fumy components from the undersides of cars owned by law-abiding citizens who rightly expect law enforcement efforts to abate the thievery. Here is what an Irvine Police spokesperson wrote:

“Last month, a man and a woman stole two catalytic converters from vehicles parked at the Spectrum Center. Our Auto Theft Detectives worked with our Spectrum Team to identify the pair. This morning, we arrested Eva Drulhe, 24, of Laguna Niguel. Her partner in crime was arrested over the weekend for fleeing from another police department in a stolen car. We can’t show you what her sweatshirt said, but we don’t think she is a fan of the police. Drulhe was booked at Orange County [Jail] for grand theft and conspiracy.”

It may seem sophomoric, but such blatant hate hurled at cops may be hindrances to prospective police candidates onlooking the current disdainful climate brewed by zany politics, all gulped by cold-hearted anarchists. Are otherwise suitable candidates discouraged enough to forego giving a law enforcement career a chance? Who knows? Personal constitutions vary.

Perhaps it is largely a factor in liberal locales, given the rampancy of malice against police officers and deputies and troopers feverishly trying to implement public safety measures and stay alive while doing so.

The notorious defund-the-police movement scarred the law enforcement profession, setting it back significantly. Not very encouraging for police aspirants to see a would-be salary dwindled and ill-supported.

Recently, this factor was exacerbated by our so-called representatives whose representational stances bizarrely loaded the Yeas column about our tax dollars footing the bill for more than 57,000 of Ukraine’s first responders. This…while our nation stares at yet another purported “government shutdown” and cities being ravaged by looters somehow handled by whittled police rosters.

Per the Daily Mail, “A review of the [ongoing] funding granted to Ukraine shows that 1.2 billion has been used to pay the salaries of more than 57,000 first responders in the country.” How about that?

Slap after slap, our public safety faces are stung with such nonsense, not only being stripped of funding here in favor of gifting it elsewhere but also being handcuffed by moronic laws that favor miscreants’ monstrous behaviors.

Any pro-police American is understandably dour from that kind of news…but they likely also breathe sighs of relief from the stats indicating what good governance is doing for our citizens in our country…

In law-and-order enclaves, we are witnessing some law enforcement candidates step up to the plate. My county alone has decent-sized academy graduations here and there, portraying the sheriff’s office distributing silver stars to newly trained deputies.

(Photo courtesy of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.)

Makes one wonder what innovations and additives are being used to attract more law enforcement candidates.

Grasshoppers with Guns

As a youngster watching actor David Carradine in the popular TV series “Kung Fu” and aspiring to be a cop “one day,” I admired the bond between the mentor teaching martial arts to his apprentice, respectfully referred to as “Grasshopper,” with occasional on-the-spot tests of hand-eye coordination measured by the student’s lightning-quick ability to snatch pebbles from the mentor’s extended hand, indicating stellar self-defense capacity and ultra-confidence in self-control to proficiently and safely subdue foes.

One thing I have noticed growing with interest is the mental discipline and physical finesse afforded by employing jiu-jitsu (aka “gentle art”) in the police profession, more safely putting to bed any close-quarter battles with violent individuals, especially those trying to wrest away cops’ service weapons during scuffles.

Yet that, too, will likely be branded by the antithetical lot of prosecutors as something unfavorable, not in the playbook, as if LEOs should be confined to the same old box of basic wing-and-prayer conventions while taking the brunt of battles with criminals.

From our friends at Black Belt Badge: “Jiu-jitsu training goes beyond physical techniques; it instills discipline, situational awareness, and the ability to assess threats appropriately. These skills are invaluable in minimizing the use of force and fostering safer interactions between officers and the communities they serve.

(Photo courtesy of Black Belt Badge.)

“By implementing mandatory jiu-jitsu training, we demonstrate our commitment to the well-being of both officers and the public. This comprehensive approach equips law enforcement personnel with the tools they need to navigate complex scenarios while ensuring the safety of all parties involved.

“Together, let us advocate for change and support the integration of mandatory jiu-jitsu training within the police academy curriculum. By doing so, we can enhance the preparedness, professionalism, and effectiveness of our officers, fostering a safer and more compassionate society for all.”

According to the Los Angeles Police Academy staff, “More and more recruits are coming through with jiu-jitsu backgrounds. And that’s great!

“Knowing jiu-jitsu fosters a sense of confidence and personal safety, which can positively impact an officer’s mindset and performance in challenging and potentially dangerous scenarios,” hence also encouraging police aspirants to confidently forge forward and plunk down applications to fill public safety voids.

One can imagine offering specialized skills such as martial arts in police academy settings will be favorable in recruitment initiatives. Speaking of specialized focuses…

Special Recruitment Initiatives

The Orlando Police Department (OPD) launched a special initiative called the 30X30 Initiative, the aim of which is to recruit female candidates and increase the demographic of policewomen by 30% by the year 2030.

From Orlando.gov: “Currently, women make up only 12% of sworn officers and 3% of police leadership throughout the United States. Within the Orlando Police Department, women represent over 15% of all sworn personnel.

“The 30×30 Initiative is a coalition of police leaders, researchers, and professional organizations who have joined together to advance the representation and experiences of women in policing agencies across the United States.”

As such, Orlando PD’s Recruitment Unit has been/will remain busy scouting for female police applicants to meet their 30X30 goal, traversing the nation, and rolling out information sessions (mementos included).

(Photo courtesy of the Orlando Police Department.)

From the looks of it, a full room of aspirants were interested in what the OPD Recruitment Unit officers had to say/share. That has been the goal of all America’s law enforcement agencies, to at least garner applicants to process, all toward filling academy seats and then cruisers on patrol.

(Photo courtesy of the Orlando Police Department.)

“Today [September 26, 2023], we hosted a Women’s Recruitment Event where aspiring officers had the privilege of hearing from women leaders within our agency. Their stories, dedication, and strength serve as inspiration for all those looking to join the force. If you want to join the Orlando Police Department, apply now: orlando.gov/jobs.”

Concerning Orlando PD’s initiative and the police recruiters pounding the pavement, in search of bona fide prospects to don badges, we can only hope they fulfill this mission well before 2030. The dam has been leaking like a sieve and we don’t have enough Dutch Boy/Girl thumbs (or chewing gum and duct tape) to plug it all.

Analyzing police recruitment and retention and benthic-low morale in the law enforcement sector, my esteemed colleague Steve Pomper reported the following in his recent piece, “Paul Pazen, Denver police chief said, ‘We are holding things together with duct tape and chewing gum right now.’”

That may not be the exact circumstance in largely conservative, police-supporting Florida, but if OPD is shopping, there is a bona fide need. And that goes for all of America’s police entities scouting for prospects to fill the void left by an anti-cop climate recklessly generated by a self-serving party that abdicated We the People, instead bear-hugging personal power while wearing cheap sunglasses.

Some of these anti-police, soft-on-crime politicos, when victimized by the criminals they emboldened, have barked for police response: Ironic.

Cops forged forward to the incident scene/victim: Not ironic whatsoever, depleted ranks and all.

Generally speaking, recruitment efforts are only worthy when holding hands with retention success. Perhaps the NYPD is a prime example of setting up classes for the enormity of vacancies, which some would call a draw. Going through the motions, not getting ahead.

Whereas some law enforcement agencies may be adding and staying ahead, others are see-sawing and trying to survive it all.

With that, hats off to the stalwart cops who hold the line and show up despite tentative circumstances.