Law enforcement agencies in the Rochester area are facing an uphill battle as the number of recruits decline.
Sgt. Matt Kareuzer with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office says, in 2013, more than 1,500 hundred people were signed up to take the necessary tests to join the force.
However, by 2017, that number had dropped to only 1,100.
“It’s a matter of the turnover when people retire. We have a shrinking amount of people wanting to take this kind of job, who feel like they’re up to the challenge of doing it based on what they see online,” Kareuzer said.
Another challenge officials face are the viral police-encounter videos flooding social media. Lt. Robert Long with the Gates Police Department said they “have a negative effect on people’s perception of law enforcement.”
Now, officials are turning the tables, using social media to push their recruitment efforts. Agencies across the region are hosting recruitment nights, encouraging neighbors to sign up for exams before the August deadline.