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Law enforcement agencies across the country are scrambling to fill open positions

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Posted at 4:51 PM, Oct 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-10-13 22:50:21-04

Law enforcement agencies across the country are scrambling to fill open positions, but applications just aren't coming in fast enough.

"We're having a really hard time finding good, qualified candidates who are interested in actually doing the job," said Commander Jim Munro, Grover Beach Police Department.

"With having nearly 500 employees, there's always vacancies," said Commander Chad Nicholson, San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office.

The Grover Beach Police Department, Paso Robles Police Department and San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office are trying to fill multiple open positions.

"So we're always actively recruiting people and we get people that come and solicit us as well just because it is a great department to work for and it's a great community," Nicholson said.

"In the past, police academies have had a ton of applicants to try to go recruit, to try to hire from the police academy," Munro said.

But now, law enforcement agencies are the ones sending recruits to the police academy.

"If there was a trainee spot open several years ago we would get, sometimes, several hundred applicants and in today's day and age we're getting quite a few less," Munro said.

In order to recruit for the available jobs, the Grover Beach Police Department has opened a trainee position with incentives.

"Typically, we didn't have to worry about paying people to go to a police academy because people would just go and then hope to get hired, but now agencies are recruiting them and paying them and providing benefits for them to attend the police academy," Munro said.

Officers attribute the drop in applications to multiple factors including negative attention law enforcement has recently received and a growing number of jobs offering work-from-home options.

"When you're trying to think of your future, this is a great spot to be in, plus you get to help your community you serve as well," Munro said.

If you're interested in applying for a position, you can find those listings on the agencies' websites.