The Rhode Island police departments are facing difficulty recruiting new officers. North Providence Police Chief Alfredo Ruggerio stated that despite previously receiving hundreds of applications, they are now only receiving a dozen on average. Recruitment numbers are at an all-time low, but Ruggerio assures the community that public safety remains secure. Retirement of older officers only exacerbates the problem. Providence Police Department has historically received nearly 3,000 applicants for its police academy, but most recently only received 999 recruits. To combat the staffing shortage, Providence Police for the first time will now consider applications from officers in other communities. Cranston Police Department hopes to hire more officers this summer as it is down 10 officers due to retirements. Similarly, the Woonsocket Police Department is in the process of recruiting new members despite having its lowest turnout since 2016. Despite promoting pensions and benefits, recruitment numbers continue to fall. Ruggerio believes that public perception is the reason and that there is a lack of support from residents and political leaders throughout the country towards law enforcement. This issue also affects Massachusetts, with Attleboro down several officers and the Fall River Police Department down by 17 officers. To address the issue, the New Bedford Police Department is offering a sign-on bonus to increase staffing.

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