On Watch: Manpower Shortage.

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Something the Hathian Police Department has long suffered from is a shortage of officers. We simply do not have enough to fill out critical areas. We have perhaps 32 officers total, including senior commanders. It is no where near enough to adequately patrol Hathian, to say nothing of handling major situations. We make do with what we have, but it is only a matter of time before we lose control of certain areas of the city, assuming we haven’t already. Areas that require a heavy presence: the Projects, the Columtreal University area.

Slots we need to have filled: Patrol, Desk Clerks and support staff,  Detectives – a little of everything. We’re actively recruiting. Being an HPD officer is a good career. The pay is OK, and there are possibilities for advancement. We have the budget for officers and training. However, we don’t have the budget for motor patrol – most officers will end up on foot patrol. It works. I spent a good eighteen months working a foot beat in the Central District in Toledo as a first assignment after getting off probationary status there. Foot Patrol isn’t perfect, but it does put us on the street. We can get a feel for what is going on the city more easily than in motor patrol. And it doesn’t break our budget. Frankly, relying on Motor Patrol helped create the mess of the infamous Rodney King Incident and its aftermath in Los Angeles.

There are rumors floating around that if we ever reach minimum staffing levels that HPD Command will reactivate the Anti-Crime Team and establish a new special duty unit, the Disorder Control Unit (DCU) – more on the DCU later. Frankly, based on what I have seen here, we need both units. We need units with special capabilities. But without the manpower, we can’t field the units. We have to take care of our basic duties first – Patrol, Response and Presence.

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