Baton Rouge Launching Marketing Campaign to Recruit Police | Louisiana News

BATON ROUGE, L.A. (Associated Press) — The city of Baton Rouge is looking for more police officers, and Police Chief Murphy Ball said officials will conduct something new — a massive marketing campaign — to get them involved.

“You’ll see us on social media, you’ll see us on billboards, you’ll see some commercials. For the first time, it was a very violent recruitment drive,” Paul said.

At a metro board meeting on Wednesday, Paul announced that $50,000 will go to marketing to hire the officers, WAFB-TV reported.

Our number one strategy for this year and last year is to fill vacancies within the department. We need soldiers on the ground for these strategies to work.”

After a record year in murders, officials said putting more police on the streets is a priority.

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Sgt. Darren Ahmed, the department’s recruitment director, said he believes the best recruiting tool is the department’s officers themselves.

“When our officers come out, everyone from the newest officers to their seniors, our vice chiefs, our chiefs, our uniformed patrol leaders, all of these things play a useful role and let the community see, ‘Okay, I want to do,’” Ahmed said.

Ahmed said that as of January 1, the department had 588 officers on their payroll. However, he said, the ministry allocates 698 and “our goal is to reach these numbers to keep pace with the attrition and resignations.”

What will make the biggest difference in getting new recruits is a salary increase, Baton Rouge Police Association President Brandon O’Neill said. Beginning in 2021, new recruits will earn a salary of up to $43,116 after their first year in the department. Recruits with an undergraduate degree will earn up to $45,616 annually, depending on the type of degree they hold.

More than 20 people have already registered for the police academy in June, but Ahmed said he would like to see more.

“I would like to shoot an academy of 50 men and I think that would be historic, so if the good lord had said the same and with proper support from management — and we got that — we would,” he said.

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