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Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Police Department (CPD) Superintendent Eddie Johnson today announced that the city has successfully added more than 1,000 new officers to the department since the start of the hiring plan in 2017 at a recruit welcome ceremony at the Police Academy. These new officers have helped contribute to the ongoing decline in violent crime over the last two years.
“Over the past two years, the city has embarked on an incredible journey to transform the department, adding more than 1,000 new officers to be the change, embody the values of this great city and keep all of our residents safe,” said Mayor Emanuel. “The officers entering the Academy today are part of this great milestone that represents not just a safer Chicago, but a brighter future in every neighborhood.
In September 2016, Mayor Emanuel first announced plans to deploy 970 more police officers to safeguard neighborhoods in two years, while also filling vacancies left from retirements and promotions. During today’s ceremony, 67 new recruits were welcomed to the Academy as the second-to-last class of the year.
In addition to putting more officers on the street, CPD’s recruiting efforts have also been focused on improving diversity within the department to ensure that it better represents the culturally diverse neighborhoods of Chicago. Currently, more than half (51.7 percent) of CPD’s sworn officers self-identify as a minority.
"Our two-year journey toward adding over 1,000 of Chicago's best and brightest to protect and serve our neighborhoods culminates with today's class of police recruits, and represents the effort to create a diverse force reflecting the neighborhoods we serve throughout our great city," said CPD Superintendent Eddie Johnson.
Since the start of the hiring plan in 2017, CPD has hired 2,285 new officers to join the Department and promoted 96 Lieutenants, 364 Sergeants, and 503 Detectives.
While more work remains, investments in personnel and technology have helped to fuel reductions in gun violence with over 30 percent less shootings over the last two years.
The ongoing hiring plan is part of Mayor Emanuel’s comprehensive public safety strategy – including investing in proactive intervention strategies, expanding youth support services like mentoring for more at-risk youth and stimulating neighborhood economic development with programs like the Neighborhood Opportunity Fund.
During six months of training at Police Academy, officers will learn all applicable laws and protocols for being a Chicago Police Officer. In addition to physical training, they received instruction in procedural justice, implicit bias, mental health awareness, crisis intervention and de-escalation, use of force, building community trust and critical thinking. This is followed by three months of field training, during which officers are paired with Field Training Officers for hands-on guidance during their initial months in the field.
These new officers will have access to new tools, technology and resources to partner with the community and fight violent crime. That includes CPD’s district-based Strategic Decision Support Centers which include gunshot detection systems, POD crime cameras and mobile phone technology to support police in preventing, combating and responding to violent crime across the city.