MIL-OSI USA: Meijer Introduces Bill to Address Nationwide Police Officer Shortage


Source: United States House of Representatives – Representative Peter Meijer (R-MI)

WASHINGTON, D.C. U.S. Representative Peter Meijer (R-MI) this week joined Representative Dean Phillips (D-MN) and others in introducing the bipartisan Pathways to Policing Act to address the nationwide police shortage. The legislation invests in programs to expand police officer recruitment efforts and help state and local law enforcement agencies struggling to maintain adequate staffing levels. While the root cause of the officer shortage is multifaceted, bolstering the pipeline of service-oriented individuals is one way to ensure agencies have the resources they need to protect our communities and keep officers safe.

“Law enforcement departments around the country are struggling to retain officers and recruit new ones, even as our communities continue to face increased rates of violent crime,” said Rep. Meijer. “It is critical that we provide adequate funding and resources to encourage more people, especially those who live in the communities they would serve, to become police officers. I am proud to join this bipartisan effort to support our law enforcement departments and ensure they have the personnel required to keep our communities safe.”

“Keeping people safe is a fundamental responsibility of government, but the increasing difficulty in recruiting and retaining principled officers is compromising the security of communities all around the country,” said Rep. Phillips. “We must provide new tools for law enforcement agencies to attract the best and brightest Americans to serve the communities in which they live. Minnesota has shown the country how to do just that, and it’s time to assist agencies around the country in recruiting a new generation of principled police officers, and ensure safety, security, and justice for all.”

The Pathways to Policing Act will provide $50 million to the Department of Justice (DOJ) to operate nationwide recruitment campaigns, and an additional $50 million to create and operate “Pathways to Policing” programs supported by local and statewide marketing and recruiting efforts. Priority for the grants to states, local governments, and law enforcement agencies under this program will be given to applicants seeking to build a diverse police force that represents the communities they serve.