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Pittsburgh to retest officer candidates who failed psych evals

Twenty-three candidates will be given the opportunity to take a new psychological test as the city reviews the evaluation process to ensure fairness



By Joanna Putman

PITTSBURGH, Pa. — Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey and Public Safety Director Lee Schmidt announced that 23 police officer candidates previously rejected on psychological grounds will have the opportunity for re-evaluation and a second chance to join the force, KDKA reported.

This decision comes as the city faces urgent staffing needs due to retirements and officer departures, according to the report.

“It’s a big concern and that’s why we started doing our due diligence to find out what we needed to do,” stated Mayor Gainey.

The candidates undergo psychological testing after they have passed a written exam, a physical agility test and a criminal background and polygraph test, according to the report. The standards for passing will not be lessened amid the review of the psychological exam process.

Public Safety Director Schmidt plans to retest the candidates with new psychologists, amid concerns about the fairness of the current psychological assessments.

“We want to ensure that our processes are fair, equitable,” Schmidt said. “But we also want to make sure we do get the right people in these positions. We don’t want people that are trying to enter the workforce or police force for the wrong reasons.”

The rejected candidates will undergo new psychological evaluations within the next two weeks, with the aim to enroll 40 recruits in a new class scheduled to start on May 20.