The Gwinnett County Police Department is (still) looking for a few (dozen) good men and women.
The department announced Thursday that it will hold a “hiring event” during the first weekend in August. The two-day event is just the latest step in the agency’s years-long battle against attrition.
There are currently 104 vacant police officer positions, officials said — a number that represents more than 13 percent of the department’s authorized personnel.
“Hiring and retention are problems faced by many police departments throughout Georgia and the rest of the United States,” the department said in a news release announcing the hiring event.
“GCPD has turned to non-traditional means of recruiting new officers, including several trips to Upstate New York and other parts of the country. However, the majority of applications received by the Gwinnett County Police Department are still from Georgia residents.”
Gwinnett police, like many other departments, have attributed attrition among their ranks to several factors, including a decreased appetite for the job in general and better wages offered by upstart departments elsewhere in metro Atlanta.
Authorities have ventured to upstate New York and colleges around the Southeast on multiple hiring missions, at times compressing the evaluation process to speed up the process.
Earlier this year, Gwinnett County’s Board of Commissioners passed a $1.6 billion budget that included money to help carry out a plan that would give up to 250 county officers — plus more than 200 sheriff's deputies and 55 corrections officers — the chance for 6 percent pay raises. A new rank, and accompanying paygrade, was also created for experienced officers. Increased pay levels for officers in specialized units were also in the works.
Earlier this month, the Board of Commissioners proposed a millage rate increase that it said would allow it “to set aside funds to begin to address hiring and retention issues related to certain types of employees, primarily sworn law enforcement positions.”
The hiring event will be held from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Aug. 5 and 6. It will be held at the department’s training center at 854 Winder Highway in Lawrenceville.
The department is also hoping to fill 27 vacant 911 and dispatch positions.
“Applicants for police officer and communications officer attending the event will complete a large portion of the hiring process on the same day and should plan on spending a few hours at the Training Center,” officials said. “Police applicants will participate in an orientation session, physical fitness assessment, and panel interview.”
More information can be found at gwinnettpolicejobs.com.
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