Prince George’s Co. Police Open Hiring Practices Review

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Prince George County has launched a review of how it hires police officers as the county competes for a smaller number of recruits interested in the position.

Prince George County has launched a review of how it hires police officers as the county competes for a smaller number of recruits interested in the position.

The police chief told WTOP he was not intimidated by how the recent turmoil might affect the constitution of his ranks and that he plans to offer a department-wide change as a ” carrot ”for cadets.

Part of the strategy for attracting new recruits is to check whether the hiring process is preventing the police department from reaching larger cadet classes, Chief Malik Aziz said in an exclusive interview.

“What denied people 30, 40, 50, 60 years ago, they no longer do. So we always have to look at our qualifications, our disqualifications, the mission process, the things that make sense and those that don’t. So I look at everything to get people to come, ”he said.

In addition to physical and psychological tests, Prince George County officers must pass a written test, several performance tests and a polygraph test. They must also clear a background test. Background test disqualifiers were not immediately available.

The latest class which begins in November has 17 hired recruits, according to county police data. The department wants to go to 30.

But the recent history of the Prince George County Police Department may not make it the most desirable place to work, which was brought to the attention of the Chief during the one-on-one interview. Six of its officers have been indicted this year, and in light of the department’s recent policy recognizing racial prejudice in the ranks, why would anyone want to join PGPD?

“These are exactly the reasons why you would be a police officer, because these are the hardest times. When you want to restore the profession, when you want to advance a certain police service – which is Prince George County in this case – you want to be part of the change, ”Aziz said.

Aziz likened his department to a rocket and said he plans to take the opportunity to embrace change out of the turmoil.

“I was reading a quote from [Facebook COO] Sheryl Sandberg, and she said, “When you are offered a seat on a rocket, you don’t ask what seat. You just went up. It’s the rocket. This is where we are going, and you want to be a part of that change.

“You want to be part of the restoration, part of the rebranding, part of a professional police force that engages the community, that calls for procedural justice, that is, fair and impartial police, that cares about the safety and well-being of officers, ”Aziz said.

The department could not say who is involved in the review of the agent hiring process, what it might consider or when it will end.

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