DENVER – It’s been a difficult time for Colorado law enforcement. Some agencies say there is now a critical shortage of applicants. The FBI is targeting one specific group. They want to see more females applying to become special agents.
The FBI says it’s been challenging getting enough qualified candidates. They call it a “critical need”. They’ve released recruiting videos and are touting the benefits of working for the agency.
Special Agent in Charge, Calvin Shivers said, “It’s been very difficult because the process itself is very challenging. The number of candidates, there’s an extensive background investigation, and we tend to look at previous employment history, we have a drug policy and a polygraph examination and some of those things are challenging. But it’s a career that is well worth going through the process.”
The FBI specifically would like to attract more female candidates. SAC Shivers said, “I believe the FBI should be reflective of the community we serve, so what that means is we need special agents from all races, religions, genders to support the mission.”
The once male dominated profession is slowly taking a turn. In 1971, women accounted for just 2 percent of all police officers. Nationally, that number is now 13 percent.
DPD says women represent 15 percent of their force. In fact, DPD’s most recent class had ten females out of 48 recruits.
The FBI says their number is 20 percent female. But they want women to know the sky’s the limit and that women make great leaders. SAC Shiver said, “Here in Denver one of the assistant special agents in charge is a woman, we have female supervisor special agents, even on the professional women play a special role in the FBI as a whole.”
DPD says they are not having a problem recruiting quality candidates, men or women. Commander Rick Kyle, who oversees DPD’s Academy and training program said, “A lot of agencies are several hundred officers short and they are not able to fill academy classes. Here in Denver, Denver is a great place to live, the economy is thriving, the Denver Police Department is a very attractive place for people to work. The pay and benefits package is very competitive.”
He did emphasize the need to attract more female applicants though, “We are always looking to diversify and be reflective of the community. This (graduating) class had 10 females our of 48 total, and on Monday, we have 17 females starting out of a class of 51.”
The FBI and a dozen other local agencies will host a symposium on May 10 at Regis University to answer questions and accept applications. Men and women are invited to attend. It is a free event.
Here are the details:
May 10 from 6-8pm
3333 Regis Boulevard, Claver Hall, Room 315
Denver, CO 80221