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Identity & Community

Pittsburgh Police Force Grows As New Officers Sworn In

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Sarah Kovash
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90.5 WESA
Public safety officers take part in a promotion ceremony at the City-County Building downtown on Thursday, Feb. 16, 2017.

The number of Pittsburgh police officers is on track to reach its highest number in 15 years, city officials said just one day after installing new Chief Scott Schubert.

On Friday, a class of seven new Pittsburgh police officers were sworn in – all experienced and coming from other regional departments.

Mayor Bill Peduto said the city has made intentional efforts to attract outside talent.

“We’ve really increased the scope of who we’re going after, and because of that our applicant pool has increased greatly,” Peduto said. “We’re looking at the numbers, but it appears that over the past three years, there have been more officers who have left their jobs to become a Pittsburgh police officer, than Pittsburgh police officers that have gone to the suburbs.”

Once the next graduating police class of 30 recruits is sworn in, the city will have more than 900 officers. Peduto said that’s the highest number since 2002, and a class of 27 is slated to follow them later in the year.

He said employing that many officers will be financially challenging, but is a priority for the city.

Schubert was officially sworn-in during a ceremony at the City-County Building downtown on Thursday. Seven other public safety officials were also promoted.

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Credit Pittsburgh Bureau of Police
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Pittsburgh Bureau of Police
Pittsburgh's Act 47 financial recovery plan adopted in 2004 prompted layoffs among public safety departments, including the Bureau of Police. Few recruits were hired in the proceeding years.