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Naples Police say they see improvement following staff shortages

Nationwide issues with recruitment and retention still linger nationwide
Posted at 6:08 PM, Dec 08, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-08 18:08:25-05

NAPLES, Fla — Police departments nationwide have grappled with recruitment and retention issues, but the Naples Police Department is evidently showing signs of a positive trend.

Naples Police Lieutenant Bryan McGinn has been with the department for 15 years and spoke to Fox 4 about the department's staffing situation.

"Within the last 2 years, we've filled our 15 to 16 vacancy spots that we had," says McGinn.

A few years ago, the department faced challenges retaining officers but now has just one vacancy left to fill.

This improvement coincides with changes in leadership.

Naples City Manager Jay Boodheshwar, who has been in office since last year, has prioritized employee retention. He hired Ciro Domingues as the new Police Chief.

While hiring has been a focus, the department says it has also focused greatly on work culture.

"We've kind of changed our approach from hiring to focusing on growth within the agency, building our command, and developing our police officers from the ground up," said McGinn.

Last year, the leaders in Naples voted to approve a new contract for the city’s police force after the police union negotiated about a 12% wage increase.

"We've had a great opportunity to work with our partnership with city manager staff as well as the mayor and city council, and that's where those negotiations happen between us and the Fraternal Order of Police," explains McGinn.

While some residents expressed concerns, community feedback on Naples Police has been overwhelmingly positive, according to McGinn.

One resident mentioned, "I have profound respect for police officers. It's a tough job."