BALTIMORE (AP) — Baltimore officials are asking members of the community for help finding city residents to join the police force as the department aims to hire 300 people by the end of the year.
The “Hometown Heroes” initiative announced by Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and Commissioner Frederick Bealefeld on Thursday includes a promotion of the cadet program and an effort to get community members to help recruit potential hires.
Applicants don’t need to be top athletes or geniuses — though those applicants are welcome too, Bealefeld said.
“The number one requirement is that they have a desire to serve the citizens of this great city,” he said.
It makes the department stronger to have officers who can draw on their personal knowledge of the city, Bealefeld said. Community recruiters will be able to serve their city by using their personal skills and knowledge of the community, Rawlings-Blake said.
Although the mayor’s proposed fiscal year 2012 budget includes cuts, she plans to fund the effort to hire hundreds of officers. The department met its 100 recruit goal last year and is on track to hire all 300 this year, according to the mayor’s office.
Bealefeld, a Baltimore native, said his start as a cadet gave him a work ethic that has served him throughout his career in the department.
“I think we’ll have a stronger department and we’ll have a stronger city when we find people — just like the commissioner — who can start out and grow up through the ranks,” Rawlings-Blake said.
For more information and to sign up, contact the Baltimore Police Personnel Section at 410-396-2340 or click here.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)