Police union raises concerns over Ark. 911 center being down nearly 50% of workforce
During some shifts, the dispatch center has only had one person assigned to answer 911 calls for the entire city
By Ashley Silver
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — A year after being removed from under the Little Rock Police Department’s command, Little Rock 911 is facing dire recruitment and retainment problems.
During some shifts, the dispatch center has only had one person assigned to answer 911 calls for the entire city, KARK News reported. Out of the 56 positions at the center, there are 27 vacancies – meaning they’re down nearly 50% in staffing. According to Little Rock 911 Director Juana Green, 12-hour shifts have been implemented to ease the burden.
The Little Rock Fraternal Order of Police has taken notice of the staffing issues and voiced their concerns about a potential safety problems for officers.
“If we don’t have any information, it may take too long to get the proper information to take the proper action,” Zach Farley, president of Little Rock Fraternal Order of Police, told KARK News. “They’re [officers] at risk even more and it puts the public at even more risk.”
Green said the city is considering a salary increase for dispatchers, although an exact timeline for the implementation of a pay raise has not yet been set by the mayor, according to the report.