In the News: Maria Elvira Salazar, Chris Pappas Want to Help Police Departments Recruit and Retain Officers

Florida Daily
July 12, 2022

Last week, U.S. Rep. Maria Elvira Salazar, R-Fla., teamed up with U.S. Rep. Chris Pappas, D-NH, in a push “to bring legislation to the floor that would improve recruitment and retention efforts by police departments while making necessary reforms and improvements.”

Pappas and Salazar led a letter to U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and U.S. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., signed by more than a dozen other U.S. House members from both sides of the aisle on the matter.

“We write to urge you to bring legislation to the floor that would bolster the recruitment and retention efforts of police departments while honoring the officers who serve. Our law enforcement professionals show up every day with a steadfast commitment to serving their communities and standing up for equal justice under the law, yet many agencies are understaffed, underfunded, and lack the vital resources and training they need to do their jobs,” they wrote.

“These practical pieces of bipartisan legislation are necessary to reform, improve, and assist our law enforcement officers and agencies. The bills cover a broad range of issues. They include grants for programs such as hiring mental health professionals, supporting small police departments, and maintaining adequate staffing levels. Passing this legislation will provide departments with the tools they need to strengthen partnerships, build trust, and keep our communities safe,” they added.

Pappas and Salazar pointed to 13 “pro-law enforcement bills” that they wanted to see brought to the House floor for a vote.

“There is no doubt that crime is on the rise and our neighborhoods, unfortunately, tend to be significantly less safe than they were just two years ago,” said Salazar. “As the daughter of Cuban exiles, I firmly believe in the need for a strict and fair rule of law. That is why I am calling on House leaders to act in a bipartisan way to respond to growing concerns over crime and provide police with the support necessary to keep us all safe.”