The Federal Police want a “more transparent and effective” recruitment process, a spokeswoman told Belga news agency on Tuesday.
Her comment came just hours after Police Commissioner-General Marc De Mesmaeker referred, in an interview with Knack, to the possibility of asking the incoming government to recruit people with limited police records.
“We’re certainly not going to lower the standards for recruiting police officers because of a staff shortage,” the spokeswoman stressed.
The police have 3,700 vacancies. In the Knack interview, De Mesmaeker, who has been at the helm of the force for one year now, explained that he wished to ask the Government to clarify those sentences that result in immediate exclusion from the selection process.
Federal Police Spokeswoman Sarah Frederickx stressed that it was wrong to say the police force was aiming to recruit people with police records to offset its staff shortage. “We’re certainly not going to compromise on quality,” she said.
The aim is for selection conditions to be clearer for candidates from the start of the procedure. “Currently, people who have committed moral or drug-trafficking offences can apply, but are eliminated during the internal selection process,” she explained. “The objective is for them to know from the inception that it’s useless to apply.
“The idea is not to exclude people fined for poor parking or riding a bicycle without lights. That’s not the case at this moment. All we are looking for is a more transparent and effective recruitment.”