Ida-Viru County Faces Serious Lack of Police
The government is struggling to find solutions for alleviating the deficit of law enforcement personnel in Ida-Viru County.
In recent years, there has been a serious lack of police officers in the county, with about six officers replacing every nine that leave their jobs. The East Prefecture currently has 40 vacancies for new police officers, reported Eesti Päevaleht.
But the dilemma is that, on one hand, relatively few people living elsewhere find Ida-Viru County a desirable location; on the other hand, many of the locals don't speak Estonian well enough to qualify as police officers.
Potential solutions to the crisis include moving the Academy of Security Sciences farther east from Tallinn, with the hope that cadets, upon graduation, will opt to take a job in the region. It is not clear, however, whether such a move would be financially sound, and whether it would truly motivate people to live in, say, Narva.
Another potential way out would be to lower language requirements so that more Russian-speakers could be hired as police officers. But the interior minister has rejected this idea, the paper reported.
A more likely approach is to work out a system in which police officers from other regions of the country rotate to fill in the gaps in the northeast. This idea is included in the police force's development program, but nothing has yet been made official.