Additional staff helps increase critical services to Cleveland neighborhoods
The City of Cleveland today graduated its 137th police academy class, adding 20 new police officers to serve citizens. The graduates are lateral transfer officers with prior law enforcement experience in the State of Ohio. The new staff is part of Mayor Frank G. Jackson’s ongoing plan to enhance the quality of life in Cleveland neighborhoods by reducing response times for critical services.
“We are positioning for the future as we bring these 20 new officers into our police ranks,” said Mayor Jackson. “They are essential to strengthening our neighborhoods and providing a better quality of life for our citizens.”
Friends, family and city staff gathered to attend the graduation ceremony today at Cleveland City Hall. Along with Mayor Jackson, local officials included Police Chief Calvin D. Williams and Assistant Safety Director Tim Hennessey. The event also includes representatives from the State Highway Patrol, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Secret Service, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
Mayor Jackson, who announced his 2017 budget enhancements in February, promised Cleveland residents enhanced critical services in area neighborhoods. Services such as police, fire and EMS all receive significant increases in staff and equipment as a result of Issue 32. The 138th police academy cadet class will commence in June 2017. The division is in the midst of ongoing recruitment. The force today is at 1,475 officers, and with the enhancements has a budgeted staffing level of 1,601, as some vacancies are often created through attrition.
“The addition of these police officers will help create an even stronger, more responsive police department for the people of the City of Cleveland, “said Chief Williams. “We’re hiring for the foreseeable future.”
The new Neighborhood Impact Community Engagement Squad (N.I.C.E) is included in the enhanced budget of approximately $8.3 million. As a result of adding new officers to the division, the NICE unit will gain 10 officers.