Metro East PD looking to hire more officers due to lack of diver - KMOV.com

Metro East PD looking to hire more officers due to lack of diversity

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CAHOKIA, Il (KMOV.com) – The Cahokia Police Department is catching heat after many say their staff has predominantly white officers operating in a primarily black town.

“You don't want a Ferguson happening or a Baltimore happening right here in Cahokia,” said Pastor Ron Jones. “And the way the statistics are set up, it's very easy that that could happen.”

Pastor Jones moved his church of 600 people to Cahokia in January and was shocked by the lack of diversity on the police force.

The Cahokia community is 68 percent black, but 93 percent of the police department is white. Of the 28 officers that work in the area, two of them are black.

However, Cahokia Police Chief James Jones says he's trying to fix it. “We're trying to correct that situation. We're doing our methods here to increase the chances of hiring black officers. We're going to do everything we can to make this a diverse police department.”

The chief says he plans to work with churches and schools to widen the pool of police hopefuls.

Pastor Jones says he is ready to honor and work with the department to promote change. “There is a bright future in Cahokia,” he said. “I'm encouraged because change is constantly happening in this community. Not just Cahokia, but the Metro East as a whole.”

The Cahokia Police Department is now accepting applications from qualified applicants. Starting salary without having a college degree is $50,000. For more info, contact the department.

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