Police Officer Shortage Prompts Mandatory Overtime for San Jose PD

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The San Jose Police Department plans to enforce mandatory overtime for officers. Damian Trujillo reports.

    The San Jose Police Department plans to enforce mandatory overtime for officers due to a shortage of cops.

    Police are being called on to work extra hours so the department can meet minimum staffing levels, officials said.

    "We'll take volunteers first. And we have an order we're working out," Assistant Police Chief Eddie Garcia said. "We'll hold over that amount of officers that we need to ensure we have the minimum mandatory staffing levels in patrol."

    The police union, however, points to a report by the city auditor that said comp claims increase when officers work a heavy number of hours.

    "Overworked and fatigued officers will not improve safety in our neighborhoods," said James Gonzales, a director with the San Jose Police Officers Association.

    Garcia said while the city and police union work out a labor deal, his office has to take action to keep the officers and streets safe.

    "We obviously worry. We know our workforce is tired," Garcia said. "We know they work a lot of overtime. They answer the call time and time again. But they are tired."

    Garcia said he’s optimistic, with the city and the union at least in talks, but action needs to come out of those talks in order to fix the department’s staffing problems.