(COLUMBUS, Ohio) – Ohio law enforcement agencies seeking to improve their recruitment, selection, and retention of female and minority officers can apply for a 2022 Office of Law Enforcement Recruitment (LER) Fund grant starting today.
Governor Mike DeWine created the Ohio Office of Law Enforcement Recruitment in 2020 to help agencies develop a diverse network of qualified applicants. The grant program focuses on funding new or enhanced recruitment initiatives and helping agencies improve their internal recruitment processes.
“Law enforcement agencies in Ohio are regularly working to recruit and hire more officers,” said Governor DeWine. “This grant program will help agencies fill more positions and create more diversity among their ranks.”
Each agency that applies for funding must demonstrate how it will increase engagement, recruitment, selection, and retention of qualified women and minorities in policing. Funds may also support research projects that evaluate current programming, recruitment, selection, and/or retention processes in Ohio.
Categories of funded projects can include paying for basic peace officer training academy costs, funding explorer programs, law enforcement cadet programs, or college internships, and recruitment activities or marketing materials that will help engage potential applicants on the benefits of a law enforcement career.
The application period will close Dec. 16 at 5 p.m. Information on how to apply can be found at ocjs.ohio.gov. Projects may apply for up to 12 months operating from Jan. 1, 2023 to Dec. 31, 2023.
A voluntary bidders training webinar will take place Dec. 8 at 10 a.m. The training will provide helpful information for both the application preparation and review process. Applicants can register for the training here.
Governor DeWine announced the first round of 13 recruitment grants totaling nearly $425,000 earlier this year. Governor DeWine prioritized the creation of the Ohio Law Enforcement Recruitment Grant Program in the state’s 2022-2023 operating budget. Administered by the Ohio Office of Law Enforcement Recruitment, the grant program totals $1 million over the biennium.
Other assistance for first responders developed by Governor DeWine since taking office in 2019 includes the creation of the Ohio Narcotics Intelligence Center, Ohio School Safety Center, Ohio Office of First Responder Wellness, Ohio Prisoner Extradition Reimbursement Program, Ohio Body-Worn Camera Grant Program, Ohio Ballistics Testing Initiative, Ohio Crime Lab Efficiency Program, Ohio Violent Crime Reduction Grant Program, Ohio Court Backlog Reduction Program, and the new eWarrant database.