Duluth Police Department Updates their Call Response for Service

DULUTH, Minn. — Duluth police will now begin dealing with calls differently so they can cope with staff shortages.

The department is currently 22 officers short and Chief Tusken said that they are working to actively recruit more candidates.

“Most important response that we have of all of the things that we do is to be responders to 911 callers for service and some of these changes are so that we have the capacity to be first responders

to be there for those emergent calls for service.”

One of the new changes includes the police departments response to traffic incidents. Although officers will still be first responders on site, accidents that do not involve injury will have a new proto-call.

Tusken says that, “it’s pretty rudimentary and simple. It looks like this accident information card. It kind of walks people through the process of you’ve been involved in a crash here are the things that you have to collect. on the back there’s driver vehicle information and so this makes it pretty easy for us to hand out when we’ve done our part.”

Chief Tusken says that despite their current staffing shortage, the city allowed them to double their number of community service officers from 6 to 12. The community service officers are typically law enforcement students or graduates of law enforcement and they help with the work that does not necessarily have to be done by licensed police officers.

“So many times these folks that we hire as cso’s we ultimately have an opportunity to test drive them to see their work product and ultimately hire them as police officers.”

Chief Tusken said that some people like to report events via written form. There is an option for them to use online reporting on the departments website.

“Again were talking about building efficiencies and effectiveness its not that if you call were not going to come for those things. They also recognize we sort our calls for service. For those who have the capacity or want to to be able to connect and do a report without having to call 911 or have a police officer or talk to one of our CSO’s.

The department is in the process of interviewing 21 police force candidates and Chief Tusken says they are hopeful to hire at least 10 of them within the next two days.

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