In the wake of the civil unrest that rocked Minneapolis, Minnesota in 2020, the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) has struggled to maintain a force large enough to effectively enforce local ordinances while simultaneously responding to emergency calls in a timely fashion. In response, the city council has agreed to give the department an additional $6,400,000 in additional funding to attract new recruits.
The City of Minneapolis has always struggled with violent crime, although the situation has worsened considerably in the months following the civil unrest of 2020. According to the MPD's own crime statistics, violent crime soared last year, with officers investigating nearly 5,422 violent crime incidents, including homicides, rapes, robberies and aggravated assaults. Despite this significant increase, local law enforcement has been unable respond in an effective fashion due to remarkably low force levels and meager morale within the department.
MPD began 2021 with 817 law-enforcement officers on the payroll, nearly four dozen fewer than the year before. Yet out of these 817, only 638 are able to work, with the reest out on extended leave due to family emergencies or injuries sustained as a result of the riots. Thus far, the city has been unable to recoup any of these personnel losses, as less than twenty individuals have applied to work for the law enforcement agency in the past year. Residents contacted by The Intelligence Ledger have complained that there is a noticeable decrease in MPD patrols in the city's worst areas. Even more concerning for these individuals is the longer wait times on emergency calls, as only 300 officers are on duty at any given time.
As previously mentioned, the Minneapolis City Council has agreed to give the MPD $6,400,000 in additional funding to attract recruits from the community and other law enforcement agencies. According to PoliceOne, the city believes that it will, "674 officers available to work at the end of the year, and another 28 working their way through the hiring process at that time." Furthermore, Police Chief Medaria Arradondo has announced her decision to target college graduates in the upcoming recruiting campaign, with a particular focus on those with degrees in criminology, social work, psychology, and counseling.