Police officers have a difficult job and this year has been very hard in Toronto. In 2018 alone there has been a mass shooting, van attack, and more people identified by the slaying of the Toronto serial killer Brue McArthur, making it an exceptionally horrendous year.
Now, the Toronto Police are hiring officers after lifting a hiring freeze last summer. The force is experiencing a high amount of uniformed officers retiring, making a lot of job openings for new recruits but those numbers are only growing.
According to the CBC, Deputy Chief Peter Yuen stated that 175 new recruits to the Toronto force should reflect how diverse the city actually is. "We want to attract police officers from all walks of life. We want to attract officers from different communities," he told the publication.
Still, while recruitment is starting at 175 new officers by the end of 2018, there are plans to continue hiring into the new year. CBC confirmed with police union president Mike McCormack that 232 officers left 2017 and 270 officers have left so far this year.
McCormack told CBC that their expecting 300 officers to retire by the end of the year and expectations for 2019 are that a minimum of 150 officers will retire in the first few months. If there aren't any new hires soon, there will be a major shortage in the force which could be detrimental to the city's safety.
Staffing numbers are actually at the lowest they've been since 1999, almost 20 years ago. McCormack told CBC that they've seen a 20% decrease in uniformed officers.
Considering Toronto is a city that is constantly expanding there is a deep need for more uniformed officers, especially with rising gun crime. While a staffing crisis is never positive, this is a great opportunity for young students in criminology or police foundations to really get their foot in the door.