The District of Columbia’s mayor and the chief of the Metropolitan Police Department of DC on Monday vowed to hire more female police officers.
Women make up 23 percent of the department’s 3,512 sworn officers, according to the mayor’s office, above the national average of about 12 percent. But city leaders said they can and want to do better, the Washington Post reports.
Police Chief Robert J. Contee III said that by joining dozens of other departments in the “30 x 30 Pledge” — an initiative meant to encourage increasing the percentage of female officers in recruiting classes to 30 percent by 2030 — he wants to make D.C. police “the most equitable agency for women in the law enforcement field.”
Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) said the most recent police recruit class is made up of 52 percent women, and the cadet program, a pipeline for local residents to join the force, is nearly half female.
Bowser and Contee made the announcement at the police marine unit station on the Southwest Washington waterfront, using an armored tactical vehicle as a backdrop. They were flanked by a group of female cadets and officers, some them in the highest ranks of leadership — and at least one who is suing the department over allegations of discrimination against black female officers.