The New Orleans Police Department is reportedly now trying to recruit between 50 to 75 civilians in order to try and fix a major staffing problem and reduce the pressure on current, according to NOPD Superintendent Shaun Ferguson. Who made the shocking announcement at a news conference on Thursday which was broadcast on Facebook.
According to Ferguson, civilians will now attend to a variety of calls that he claims do not require police presence in an attempt to relieve pressure off of uniformed police personnel. Some civilians will be apparently even be trained to take over certain types of detective work.
According to WDSU 6, the agency has now concluded that numerous types of calls to police will no longer require actual police officers to attend and can be handled by citizens, including medical calls, loose animals, vehicle accidents on private land, forgery calls, and some larceny.
For the first half of 2022, New Orleans had the most murders per capita in the United States, with murders up 46% from the previous year and 141% from 2019.
The police superintendent who made the announcement claimed that the goal of the new program was to “make our officers feel safe.” He continued: “This is also to reduce some of the workload currently placed on our patrol and district personnel. But more importantly this is designed to reduce response time and address the backlogs in which we have in some of our districts.”
While citizens applying for the new positions will still technically be forced to pass drugs tests, they will no longer be forced to undergo credit checks in order be pass through the hiring process.
Whether citizens will feel more safe knowing that uniformed police officers won’t be dispatched for many categories of crime remains to be seen however.
Many liberal cities around the country have continued to struggle with crime and officer shortages in the wake of the George Floyd riots of 2020.