Inslee hopes regional training facilities will get police officers on the job quicker

SPOKANE, Wash. – From recruitment to training to city streets: law enforcement across Washington say they need to speed up that timeline to get more officers in your neighborhood. 

Across the country, police departments are struggling to find officers. When they do, it may take months to even start their training. 

Governor Jay Inslee on Thursday announced plans to help speed up that process in Washington. 

“Currently, recruits must attend training just at this location (Burien). They gotta travel, they gotta be away from homes and their families. You know law enforcement officers are tough enough without having to go through that disruption,” Inslee said. 

In Washington, trainees can go to the state’s two training centers in Burien and Spokane. The governor wants to build regional training campuses across the state in Pasco, Vancouver, Everett and Bellingham. It will get more officers into training faster, but they also won’t have to travel as far. 

“Our message to our community is this: We are listening and we hear you. We are bringing law enforcement training to you,” said Senator John Lovick of Mill Creek.

The proposal is a welcomed one for the Spokane Police Department.

“Additional academies will ease the backlog of peace officers waiting to begin their training at the Spokane and Burien Centers,” the department said in a statement.,

Sen. Lovick also said the issue is so important he will not let cost stand in the way. He added that it is what the state needs to do to keep families safe.

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