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Greensboro Police Department bolstering recruitment force to add new officers

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- A shift in resources will allow the Greensboro Police Department to put more of an emphasis on recruiting new officers to the police force.

The department will add three officers to its team dedicated to helping find applicants for the next police academy. That will make a total of five officers devoted to recruitment.

“Our department’s commitment to providing the people of Greensboro with the best possible police force has never wavered,” said Chief Wayne Scott, of the Greensboro Police Department. “We want to find and hire the people with a passion for helping others and for solving problems. And, we’re willing to work harder to let people know that policing is an incredibly fulfilling career.”

The move comes at a time when many departments in the Piedmont Triad compete with each other for college students completing Basic Law Enforcement Training classes at colleges across the state and other graduates about to enter the work force.

Officer F. R. Banks is one of the officers with new duties. Instead of going out on calls because of crimes, she’s visiting college campuses and making the kind of personal contact with potential recruits the department hopes will help lead to academy applicants.

“I've already received several different phone calls from people of interest so just having that one-on-one contact and getting our name out there I think can help,” said Banks.

Over the past year, FOX8 has reported on several cases of police departments in the Piedmont Triad using new strategies to entice new officers to apply. Those methods include using social media and even taking out billboard ads to stand out.

Despite the need for new officers standards are not slipping. Banks said they still need men and women who avoid credit trouble, drug use and too many traffic issues before applying.

“We do a background investigation, we contact references, and we do our own interviews,” said Banks. “Just to make sure you we're getting the best people among the qualified.”