GRPD getting out in community to recruit new officers

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The Grand Rapids Police Department is trying new tactics to recruit officers.

Some of the new methods include signs on cruisers, creating billboards and broadcasting radio ads.

Including putting signs on cruisers, billboards and radio ads. Everything is an effort to let people know they are hiring.

The department is focusing on hiring from the community. It wants to find people who live in Grand Rapids and change their mind about joining law enforcement.

“We really have to,” said Sgt. Cathy Williams. “Gone are the days when you have hundreds, if not thousands of applicants vying for the same job.”

The city spent $3,200 on billboards and $10,000 on radio advertisements across 10 stations, including a Spanish station. Grand Rapids also got magnets to put on cruisers to advertise the openings.

“We are trying to change those perspectives on a career in law enforcement and change the mindsets, that ‘this might actually be for me, this might actually work,’” said Williams.

Officers are also talking to people in person about the job. The department has attended more than 200 community events this year.

“When you take one applicant that you wouldn’t have otherwise reached and they turn out to be a great city employee; that $13,000 versus a career with an outstanding employee you wouldn’t have otherwise reached, that’s priceless,” added Williams.

The department is looking to fill 10 positions.

No experience is needed, but applicants must have a high school diploma or GED. The department will pay a working wage and for the academy while recruits go through training.

The next recruiting event is Aug. 15 and the deadline to apply is Sept. 7.

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