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LAPD Announces New Initiative to Increase Women Officers

Mayor Jim Hahn and new LAPD Chief William Bratton announced a plan on Monday to significantly increase the numbers of women in the LAPD. The LAPD, which has been under a consent decree for over 20 years to hire more women, still has not met the decree’s goal of a force comprised of 20% women, though the department is getting close, having been stalled at 19% for many years. The new plan hopes to increase the percentage of women to at least 25% of the department by increasing recruitment efforts targeted towards women, and by strengthening physical preparation programs and mentoring relationships. The plan was developed with input from the National Center for Women & Policing, the Feminist Majority Foundation, and the California Women’s Law Center. Penny Harrington, Founding Director of the NCWP, commented that “while the plan is a good start, it could be improved by increasing the hiring goals, and overhauling the so-called entry requirements. The tests continue to underemphasize communication skills abilities, and in so doing, wash out qualified female candidates.”

Sources:

Los Angeles Times, 12/17/02