Outflow, staff shortage, and low recruitment hit US police hard: NYT
The New York Times reports that US police departments are resorting to financial incentives and targeted advertisement to attract recruits.
The New York Times reports that US police departments are witnessing a sharp drop in new recruits since 2020.
The low number of new incomers led to a shortage of staff among the departments, the report said on Sunday.
The newspaper, citing a survey by Police Executive Research Forum (PERF), noted that in 2021, the number of resignations of police personnel was 43% more than that of 2019, while the number of new applicants fell notably within the same period.
According to the report, many police officers resigned from the law enforcement division due to the harsh impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, in addition to the riots that occurred in 2019 following the killing of George Floyd by the police.
In May 2020, white police officer, Derek Chauvin, kneeled on the neck of George Floyd, a Black man, for 19 minutes until he suffocated to death, sparking nationwide protests against the systemic racism of US police departments.
Earlier in December 2021, The New York Times reported that the number of people killed by US police officers has not decreased since George Floyd and Daunte Wright's murders in 2020, knowing that many US police violence cases go unreported or misclassified in official records. In 2021, murder charges against police officers have significantly increased, but criminal charges and convictions are still rare, the newspaper indicated.
Over 1,600 people or an average of three people per day were killed by police since Floyd's death in May 2020, the paper revealed then.
Another reason for the high number of exits, the media outlet said, was officers seeking better wages as remote work became widely popular among other sectors, in addition to individuals changing career paths or wanting to dedicate more time to their personal lives.
To respond to the increased rate of resignations and the low number of new recruits, the newspaper said that police departments across the country are now introducing new financial and other incentives to attract new applicants and lower the number of officers looking into exiting the force.
Watch now: Police brutality in Arkansas
The media report stated that the Minneapolis Police Department offered $7,000 to officers that want to leave the force, while another department in Seattle is offering $7,500 to new recruits and $30,000 to personnel leaving other departments and coming to the city.
Other departments resorted to advertising to attract applicants, the report added.
It's noteworthy that what led to the widespread nationwide and global anti-racism and anti-police brutality protests was not just one act of police officers murdering a Black person (George Floyd) via unreasonable force, as police brutality has long been rampant, especially in the United States, and Floyd's murder acted as the main catalyzer for the nationwide protests.