The Estonian Ministry of the Interior has submitted a proposal to the Ministry of Defence to consider adding the assistant police officer training program to conscripts' basic training course, reported Estonian daily Postimees.
"In accordance with the Internal Security Strategy, we wish to analyze the possibility of adding a law enforcement block to conscript training," Toomas Viks, press adviser at the Ministry of the Interior, told the paper.
If the plan s carried out in such a fashion that the law enforcement block is largely or fully similar to assistant police officer training, it would be possible for a conscript to work as an assistant police officer at the conclusion of their conscript service, Viks added.
The duration of the assistant police officer training program is 40 hours and entails the following subjects: basics of law, involvement of an assistant police officer, administrative procedure and implementation of measures, prevention and surveillance, child protection, acting on-site, communication with persons, direct coercion, special training, first aid and use of radio communications.
Eimar Veldre, adviser at the Ministry of the Interior's Department for Law Enforcement and Criminal Policy, said that an analysis was still needed of what exactly the program would be like and how much it would require in terms of time and finances.
According to the Ministry of the Interior, the Internal Security Strategy approved by the government aims to achieve a state in which all residents of Estonia contribute to internal security alongside law enforcement and rescue authorities, as many internal security-related problems cannot be solved solely by utilizing employees of state institutions.
The development plan applies through 2020. "It may happen that we will have the first year of conscripts whose service includes training in law enforcement already by then," said Veldre.
Postimees reported recently that the Ministry of Defence on its part is planning to draft a bill that would allow the military police to engage in traffic supervision and conduct initial procedural acts.
There are approximately one thousand assistant police officers in the country today; in comparison, about 3,000 peple enter conscript service in Estonia every year.
Editor: Editor: Aili Vahtla