Tri-Cities Law Enforcement Team Up For Hiring Event

Organizations in the Tri-Cities and Oregon were recruiting candidates to Richland, seeking to fill the shortage of law enforcement personnel.

RICHLAND, Wash. – Law enforcement from across the Columbia Basin has teamed up for a public safety hiring event. Tri-Cities Police, Sheriff’s Offices, Corrections and many others were recruiting.

“It’s not necessarily hard to hire, it’s hard to find people willing to keep doing the job,” said Benton County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Brett Hansen.

“The way the world looks at policing, it’s hard to find people who want to be in this profession,” he said. With the risks law enforcement takes, he said it’s hard to say whether a community will lend support or not.

However, Deputy Hansen said in the Tri-Cities, law enforcement has a lot of local support.

“We’re lucky in this area that our cities, our agencies, our community are very supportive of law enforcement,” said Rep. Hansen.

Hiring police is a long process, but it’s not the only deterrent.

“You never know what you’re going to face when you’re on the street as a police officer,” Crusselle said. “People don’t want to go into a career that they think is dangerous.”

There is no doubt that being a first responder is dangerous work. One attendee said he went to school with Dean Atkinson Jr., the Walla Walla Trooper shot dead in September.

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“He was on our football team, so it’s just crazy that someone you know could almost have their life taken away,” Josh Jutz said.

Jutz attended the hiring event, seeking employment in law enforcement. Despite the dangerous position, he said nothing would take him away from the position.

Jutz said the support around the community is encouraging.

“It’s amazing to see a community that has so much respect for its officers,” Jutz said.

It’s not just the police, but also firefighters, dispatch and other first responders who are understaffed and looking for qualified candidates.

READ: Tri-Cities Police Department actively recruiting to boost low numbers

READ: ‘A crisis right now’: SECOMM hires 911 dispatchers

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