BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Are you interested in joining the men and women at the Baton Rouge Police Department? The department is trying to Bridge the Gap with the community.
If so, you’re in luck! As there’s a recruiting event scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 3 at 10 a.m. at BRPD Headquarters on Airline Highway.
“The more public servants we have, the safer of a community we have,” said Cpl. Darren Ahmed with BRPD. He estimates the department currently has 600 to 700 officers. “With population steadily increasing every year, we could always use more police officers on the road,” said Cpl. Ahmed.
Ahmed says every year, BRPD is looking to hire as many officers as they can.
“I would say we’re about 60 to 100 range short, but in my greatest opinion, I would say we can use as many as we can get,” he said. The recruiting event Saturday is taking place in the BRPD headquarters parking lot.
The goal is to bring the community closer to the police department.
“If you get the community involved, it may help you make decisions on who their public servants are, it will bridge that gap and bring us closer to that community we serve,” said Cpl. Ahmed.
Starting salary for officers is $32,000 per year.
Cpl. Ahmed says right now, people are sadly starting to lean towards other occupations, with new scrutiny towards law enforcement.
“It’s getting those that mistrust the officers involved, and them getting to know those communities,” said Tina Matz, a Baton Rouge resident.
“There are more things out there that they can do, so to reassure us as the people of our state that we are safe, and that they are on our side as well, because a lot of times, now we feel like they’re not on our side,” said Stephanie Browden, another Baton Rouge resident.
It’s a stigma Cpl. Ahmed is trying to change.
“If we can take out five minutes of our time and just talk to someone in our community, we can make a greater relationship with the people we serve everyday and we can build on that trust,” he said.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
- Event starts at 10 a.m.
- BRPD headquarters on Airline Highway
- Bring your driver’s license, birth certificate, Social Security card, college transcripts, or DD Form 214 if you were in the military
- Participants have to have an active Civil Service Score in order to be accepted into the application pool
- Someone will be onsite to assist applicants with registering for the test, which takes place at the end of August