The Cedar Rapids Police Department has been trying to hire a few good men and women to join their ranks but it's been difficult to maintain or recruit qualified candidates.

That's why, according to the Cedar Rapids Gazette, CRPD has implemented for the first time ever, a new lateral transfer program. In sports, they call it "free agency." Experienced, certified officers from other departments can be paid commensurate to their current position after stepping in to join the CRPD with minimal training.

If you believe in fostering a relationship of trust between citizens and law enforcement while also meeting the physical needs and knowledge requirements, candidates who wish to apply for this program can do so here through June 7. The Marion and Iowa City police departments already have a lateral transfer program and the Gazette spoke to CRPD captain Jeff Hembera about what it entails

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Focusing on hiring already certified officers gets them on the road quicker

With experience, an officer will have to go through training on the ins and outs of the department specifically, but will not have to undergo academy training.

The CRPD was unable to obtain as many qualified candidates as they needed

During their recent annual hiring period, out of 135 applicants, only 11 had what it took to make the cut, who could pass all physical and written tests. Only half of the applicants actually even showed up for testing. Captain Hembera says they are looking to fill about seven more spots through the lateral transfer program.

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