LEO Recruiting Efforts Prove to be Difficult

SAPD officer with young girl

Police officer recruitment efforts are a tedious task. Now more than ever, recruiting, selecting, and retaining police officers is incredibly difficult. To boost recruitment efforts, The San Antonio Police Officers’ Association recently visited Austin, Texas to spread awareness on the lack of law enforcement officers in San Antonio. The San Antonio Police Department needs at least 2,418 police officers to serve and protect the 1.4 million San Antonians living in the city, however, we are short a total of 237 police officers.

The truth is with pressures and demands of the job, along with finding individuals who want to step into the dangerous career of serving and protecting, finding individuals is a daunting task. Turnover is the biggest concern for officer shortage. The number of police officers that retire or switch careers far outweighs the number of recruits found each year.

Police departments are looking for individuals with the right blend of skill sets, such as great communication skills, level-headedness, and a willingness to serve the community to the best of his or her ability. Law enforcement is viewed as a calling and not so much a career change. A takes a unique person to take on the job of a police officer and often they are recruited to other types of jobs.

However, the benefits to police officering are many. It is a challenging career that will keep the individual alert and enthused in a non-routine job. Law enforcement is rewarding due to the crises faced head on and averted. A life may even be saved in the process. The career is a secure one with great pay and benefits and room for growth. The number of departments to work in are numerous, including patrolling, investigation, and more. And finally, the job is respected by most people in the community.

The San Antonio Police Officers’ Association stands with the men and women of San Antonio who serve and protect. Do you have what it takes to serve your community?


  1. Eugene Jones Reply

    I’m interested in the SA police department officer shortages, the challenges the department faces with recruiting, excessive overtime, and the number of sworn officers the police department is supposed to have compared to the numbers SAPD actually have. I’m also interested in the month and year the City Manager canceled the Police Academy classes (was it 5 years ago, or 4 years ago?), and how many classes were canceled.

    • sapoa Reply


      Thank you for your inquiry. This is a much larger conversation top have but you can find more information on publicsafetyfacts.com. SAPD’s authorized strength is 2,443 officers however our current # of SAPD police officers is 2,188. That translates to an officer shortage of 255 officers. In 2015, City Manager Sculley had canceled 3 cadet classes and said she had no choice due to rising costs of healthcare and uncertainty of contract. Please let us know if you have any more questions and thank you again!

  2. Eugene Jones Reply

    SOPOA, Thanks for the response. I was googling that question and came across this response from April. The reason why I’m interested in the response (and more) is that I retired from the Crime Scene Unit in November 2017. I was with SAPD CSU for 7.5 years. I’m writing a book because my largest disappointment was with our SA community. Having looked at that laptop screen and listened to the radio in excess of eight hours a day, I was very, very disappointed in the calls police had to make. In my opinion, there were too many calls that were not police related, yet the complainants expected the police to respond immediately. “My child doesn’t want to do his homework,” “My 14-year-old doesn’t want to get in the car with his grandparents”, “My 5-year old took my $20.00″, My 5 -year old is having a disturbance”! I thought it sad, that Headquarters required officers to make calls that were not related to police work, especially those calls that were related to being a parent. Since the average person in SA hadn’t realized that there are over one million calls for service each year, SA is a high crime city, there is an officer shortage, 17 million in overtime the past year, 17 million the year before, on and on, My book will show the types of calls the police are required to make that are not related to law enforcement. In addition, show the types of calls that are police related, emergent and non-emergent. People probably get the fact that the PD is short, however, I believe they are naive when it comes to the many different units and follow-up units within the department. They relate the 2400 or so officers to riding around in a patrol unit only, so I feel the need to explain it in a book. Thanks for pointing me to publicsafetyfacts.com.

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