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  • Seattle Police Dept ... thoughts?

    I am thinking of applying to the Seattle PD, despite my user name...

    Anyone have any opinions of the area? The Dept? The concept of SAD (seasonal something disorder )?

    Hope to hear from you soon!

  • #2
    Check out this forum http://forums.officer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=67884
    "We're not in this business for the money. We're not in it for the excitement, and moments like this. Duty, honor, country, service, truth, and justice are good. But you can do that from behind a desk. In the end, you carry a gun and shield out into the field for the sole purpose of confronting the bad guys. The enemy. There is no other reason to be on the front lines." ~Nelson Demille

    If your story involves Peanut Butter and an animal - give up now!
    sigpic

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    • #3
      following up on Seattle

      Originally posted by themerk93
      I haven't heard good things about Seattle. Mainly, their department morale is very very low. There a many other great agencies in WA and they too are all hiring lots of positions.
      What have you heard? Why do you think this?

      Comment


      • #4
        good perspective

        Originally posted by cgh6366 View Post

        thanks for the links ... what are your thoughts as posted just above you ... Seattle bad???

        Comment


        • #5
          Even with the politics which exist in every agency...the SPD is a professional, progressive law enforcement entity...

          The equipment is of a high standard, and really you have enbough time to do police work. Some West Coast agencies are stretched so thin that officers only have time to run from call-to-call. There are times when this is the case with SPD, but you also have a lot of time for self-initiated activity....

          For the most part, the work is conducted in an environment that has a firm distaste for police officers. The citizens of Seattle are, by-and-large, very liberal. Cops in Seattle need to be very professional. I would say that the morale issues are generated more by press created by liberal news reports, and less by deficiencies in the agency. The press is always looking for a conspiracy within the agency.

          Washington State retirement isn't great, the pay is better than most, and Seattle has a wealth of units outside of patrol to go to. There are always possibilities if you're a hard worker....

          Like everywhere else, there's good and bad. If you can stomach the regional politics, then the department is a good place to begin and or make a career. The retirement and compressed work schedules will eventually get better. Good luck.

          Comment


          • #6
            However...

            Originally posted by RCW View Post
            Seattle has a wealth of units outside of patrol to go to. There are always possibilities if you're a hard worker....
            UMMM.....No.

            Right now patrol is massively understaffed, so there is nowhere for patrol officers to go. And like most big agencies - hard work might work, but nepotism, golf buddies and good old *** kissing are the only real way to go somewhere good.
            "We're not in this business for the money. We're not in it for the excitement, and moments like this. Duty, honor, country, service, truth, and justice are good. But you can do that from behind a desk. In the end, you carry a gun and shield out into the field for the sole purpose of confronting the bad guys. The enemy. There is no other reason to be on the front lines." ~Nelson Demille

            If your story involves Peanut Butter and an animal - give up now!
            sigpic

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by cgh6366 View Post
              UMMM.....No.

              Right now patrol is massively understaffed, so there is nowhere for patrol officers to go. And like most big agencies - hard work might work, but nepotism, golf buddies and good old *** kissing are the only real way to go somewhere good.
              Where do you suggest going then? I'm curious to know what dept/state you settled on, if I may ask.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by RCW View Post
                Even with the politics which exist in every agency...the SPD is a professional, progressive law enforcement entity...

                The equipment is of a high standard, and really you have enbough time to do police work. Some West Coast agencies are stretched so thin that officers only have time to run from call-to-call. There are times when this is the case with SPD, but you also have a lot of time for self-initiated activity....

                For the most part, the work is conducted in an environment that has a firm distaste for police officers. The citizens of Seattle are, by-and-large, very liberal. Cops in Seattle need to be very professional. I would say that the morale issues are generated more by press created by liberal news reports, and less by deficiencies in the agency. The press is always looking for a conspiracy within the agency.

                Washington State retirement isn't great, the pay is better than most, and Seattle has a wealth of units outside of patrol to go to. There are always possibilities if you're a hard worker....

                Like everywhere else, there's good and bad. If you can stomach the regional politics, then the department is a good place to begin and or make a career. The retirement and compressed work schedules will eventually get better. Good luck.
                Thanks. Sounds much like any LEA in a "liberal" area.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I'm still here in the United Seattle Socialist Republic

                  I'm still with SPD, but I'm looking, as are several others. The Guild (Union) started tracking actual numbers from roll call sheets. On 3/7/07, the Chief announced his"Neighborhood Policing" plan (snicker). On that day we had 450 officers assigned as 911 responders - FOR THE WHOLE DAY, ALL SHIFTS, ALL PRECINCTS! On 5/7/07, two months after the great plan was announced, we dropped 13 officers - 437 for the whole city all day, all shifts all precincts.

                  I think the bean counters here might have come over from Enron, because they use some very creative accounting and bean counting methods.

                  They tout that the Department is growing and we are hiring more officers, but the net gain is negligible.

                  Between 1/1/05 and 5/1/07 we have a net gain of +12 officers. Since 1/1/07, we are -8.
                  "We're not in this business for the money. We're not in it for the excitement, and moments like this. Duty, honor, country, service, truth, and justice are good. But you can do that from behind a desk. In the end, you carry a gun and shield out into the field for the sole purpose of confronting the bad guys. The enemy. There is no other reason to be on the front lines." ~Nelson Demille

                  If your story involves Peanut Butter and an animal - give up now!
                  sigpic

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    So where are the places to look? Granted, I have searched high and low on the internet, but am interested in a large department, where promotion happens through civil service. I also am looking for a department that values education and promotes tolerance.

                    What are the opportunities for training? Does the reduced manpower prevent much training? What about taking time off for vacations/holidays? Does an officer lose time because he or she "maxes out" and cannot take time off from work?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by cgh6366 View Post
                      I'm still with SPD, but I'm looking, as are several others. The Guild (Union) started tracking actual numbers from roll call sheets. On 3/7/07, the Chief announced his"Neighborhood Policing" plan (snicker). On that day we had 450 officers assigned as 911 responders - FOR THE WHOLE DAY, ALL SHIFTS, ALL PRECINCTS! On 5/7/07, two months after the great plan was announced, we dropped 13 officers - 437 for the whole city all day, all shifts all precincts.

                      I think the bean counters here might have come over from Enron, because they use some very creative accounting and bean counting methods.

                      They tout that the Department is growing and we are hiring more officers, but the net gain is negligible.

                      Between 1/1/05 and 5/1/07 we have a net gain of +12 officers. Since 1/1/07, we are -8.
                      Where is there to go? Washington State is basically the same...You could head to the Southwest [NV, AZ, CA] and still have staffing issues and spend your entire shift going call-to-call with no 931/932[breaks]...Then you could do what many have and head to smaller Washington agencies--and most apply to come back. Leave a department for a lifestyle change--not because you think it will be so much better in another agency...

                      Law enforcement in general is experiencing a 'staffing crisis'... For some, being a cop is punultimate...For others, long hours, stress, politics just aren't worth it...

                      With SPD you get what you put in. There will always be 'golden boys' who get whatever they want, and then there will be those that scrabble and scrape to get into a specialty unit. Work hard, politic a bit, and you'll get where you want to go... Civil service exams for specialty units are actually a great idea--which will eventually make it into the SPD--but they don't always reflect a officers prowess, expecially with a liberal complaint system like SPD has...

                      Ultimately, it depends what kind of agency you're really looking for... Be prepared, wherever you choose, many of the same issues will be constant....

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by TXleoapplicant View Post
                        So where are the places to look?
                        Edmonds, Everett, Kent, Renton, Bellevue

                        Originally posted by TXleoapplicant View Post
                        Granted, I have searched high and low on the internet, but am interested in a large department, where promotion happens through civil service.
                        Sergeant, Lieutenant & Captain are civil service. Detective spots are kind of weird - we used to have a test and a register for detective positions. Now you have to go to "detective school" and pass the class - I don't think anyone has ever failed.

                        Originally posted by TXleoapplicant View Post
                        I also am looking for a department that values education and promotes tolerance.
                        Values education - no education incentive here. I wouldn't say they alue education. SPD and Seattle are very tolerant (I'm assuming you mean gay friendly)

                        Originally posted by TXleoapplicant View Post
                        What are the opportunities for training? Does the reduced manpower prevent much training?
                        Training opportunities are abundant, the CJTC puts on great classes. But manpower does effect the ability to go. There is 40 hours of mandatory training - about 10-15 of which is worth while. Also, anything you want to go that you want the department to pay for goes through a "training committee." In most cases I have seen the training committee deny the originators application, and amazingly, some department golden child gets to go.

                        Originally posted by TXleoapplicant View Post
                        What about taking time off for vacations/holidays? Does an officer lose time because he or she "maxes out" and cannot take time off from work?
                        There are four days in SPD that are almost impossible to get off (July 4, Torchlight Parade and 2 days of Hydro races). Aside from that, vacation picks are seniority based from Jan 1 - Jan 31. After that, it's first come, first served.

                        Feel free to ask any other questions...
                        "We're not in this business for the money. We're not in it for the excitement, and moments like this. Duty, honor, country, service, truth, and justice are good. But you can do that from behind a desk. In the end, you carry a gun and shield out into the field for the sole purpose of confronting the bad guys. The enemy. There is no other reason to be on the front lines." ~Nelson Demille

                        If your story involves Peanut Butter and an animal - give up now!
                        sigpic

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Where do most officers live? I am looking for real estate and it is really expensive ... relative to Texas prices and to police salaries.... I don't want to be in an apartment for the rest of my life!!

                          Does the manpower shortage really prevent you from taking vacation?

                          Thanks!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            There are several suburbs that allow a commute of under an hour all around. Where will depend on what's important - if you have kids, good school districts all around. If you have a spouse and he/she works it may sway you in one direction or another. Anything north of Seattle from Shoreline to Everett, anything east out to North Bend and south to Tacoma. To the west you will have a long drive, or commute by ferry.

                            Patrol shortages will not usually impact a planned vacation (i.e. a planned week off), but it can impact single days off or last minute plans.
                            "We're not in this business for the money. We're not in it for the excitement, and moments like this. Duty, honor, country, service, truth, and justice are good. But you can do that from behind a desk. In the end, you carry a gun and shield out into the field for the sole purpose of confronting the bad guys. The enemy. There is no other reason to be on the front lines." ~Nelson Demille

                            If your story involves Peanut Butter and an animal - give up now!
                            sigpic

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by TXleoapplicant View Post
                              Where do most officers live? I am looking for real estate and it is really expensive ... relative to Texas prices and to police salaries.... I don't want to be in an apartment for the rest of my life!!

                              Does the manpower shortage really prevent you from taking vacation?

                              Thanks!
                              It is very expensive to live here...The truth is, though, it's relative as the average SPD officer makes a lot more than a counterpart in Texas. Overtime jobs are abundant, and off-duty work [flagging, ect.] shows no slow down as the downtown area is currently reinventing itself....

                              When I first moved here, I owned a small apartment on the Eastside in a city called Bellevue. When I needed more room I bought a new house on a decent lot in Pierce county. The commute was about 40 miles which was a bummer...After a few years, I was making enough and had built up equity to move closer to work.... I wouldn't necessarily recommend living in the city--there's lots to do here, but it is very expensive...

                              A lot of cops also live in Snohomish County which is north...You can still buy a decent house there and the communte isn't all that bad...

                              As for days off...I have never had a vacation requents or days off denied....The staffing issues are no worse than other places...And the truth is, Seattle has a relatively low crime rate....

                              Comment

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