After five police officers were killed during a Black Lives Matter protest in Dallas earlier this month, Dallas Police Chief David Brown offered a solution to protesters unsatisfied with their law enforcement.
“Serve your communities,” he said at a news conference four days after the shooting. “We’re hiring. Get off that protest line and put an application in. We’ll put you in your neighborhood and we will help you resolve some of the problems you’re protesting about.”
It looks like people listened.
According to statistics posted on its Facebook page, applications to the Dallas Police Department have more than tripled since the shooting, The Washington Post reported. Between June 8 and June 20, 136 people applied. Between July 8 and July 20, 467 applied.
That’s a jump from roughly 11 applications per day to roughly 40 per day.
The surge in applications comes at a welcome time for the department, which has suffered thinning ranks for years, in part because the starting pay for officers is lower than elsewhere in the area.
Brown believes police officers today are under too great a burden.
“We’re asking cops to do too much in this country,” he said at the news conference. “We are. Every societal failure, we put it off on the cops to solve. Not enough mental-health funding, let the cops handle it. … Here in Dallas, we got a loose-dog problem; let’s have the cops chase loose dogs. Schools fail, let’s give it to the cops. … That’s too much to ask. Policing was never meant to solve all those problems.”