With police agencies facing dozens of vacancies, departments are looking to recruiters to help them fill the holes.
Anderson Police are currently 12 officers short. It puts a strain on everyone, including limiting vacation time and increasing response times.
Lt. Tony Tilley fills the roll of Anderson Police’s recruitment officer, the roll of that job has drastically changed. As he sees a drop in applicants, finding people that can actually do the job is a challenge as well.
Applicants go through a strict background before being hired. Then they have to wait nearly 9 months to get recruits into the training academy. After the three month academy, officers then do field training at their own department. It’s nearly a year before they can begin answering calls.
Lt. Tilley uses resources available to help recruit officers, including job fairs and community events to get people interested.
City and county councils have also approved raises for officers in several areas to help to pay competitive salaries to retain the officers they do have.