In Minneapolis, the staffing shortage for police officers has reached new lows. According to a statement by the head of the Minneapolis Police Department union, there are many days that are staffed well below the minimum requirement.
Minneapolis Police Federation President Sgt. Sherral Schmidt said in an interview with 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS that their staffing is below “minimum levels.” She said, “I looked at the last 28-day schedule from every precinct and all of them are running below their minimum levels several days a month.”
She shared that at one Minneapolis precinct, they were beneath the minimum staffing level for 23 out of the last 28 days. The problem is so bad that a judge ordered Minneapolis to hire more police officers. As reported by The Minnesota Sun, “A judge ordered the city of Minneapolis to hire more police officers Thursday after finding the city’s reduction of its police force violated its charter.” The charter in Minneapolis has a requirement on the ratio of residents to police officers. “Minneapolis’s city charter mandates the city fund a police force of at least 0.0017 employees per resident, according to the lawsuit. The city, which is projected to only have a police force of 649 officers by the beginning of 2022, failed to fulfill its duties under its charter, according to the order.”
Schmidt also told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS that difficulties arise when precincts in Minneapolis have to outsource officers from other precincts when an emergency event like a shooting occurs. This leaves the other Minneapolis precincts in a tough spot, already being short staffed and having to go offer support to the surrounding areas.
Mayor Jacob Frey has not offered any comment as to the growing challenges that the Minneapolis Police Department is facing. Weeks ago, he stated that he “always opposed” the “defund the police” movement and said that he was going to work on “bringing the necessary personnel into the Minneapolis Police Department.”
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Hayley Tschetter is a reporter with The Minnesota Sun | Star News Network and The College Fix. She graduated with a degree in Communications from the University of Northwestern-St. Paul. Send news tips to [email protected]
Photo “Minneapolis Police Officer” by Tony Webster. CC BY 2.0.