Short-Staffed Seattle Police Department Urging ‘Dreamers’ To Apply

Seattle skyline (Thom Milkovic for Unsplash)

The city of Seattle is hoping to solve its police staffing crisis by filling empty positions with illegal immigrants who arrived in the US as minors with their illegal immigrant parents. The department has lost over 725 officers during the last five years, leaving the Emerald City with approximately 900 trained officers, the city’s lowest staffing level since the 1990s.

The Seattle Police Department announced on its LinkedIn page last week that it “is now accepting applications from DACA recipients.” Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is a program begun under the Obama administration that allows recipients who entered the US illegally as minors to defer action on deportation and gain work authorization. DACA recipients must have come to the US before their 16th birthday.

Previously, SPD applicants were required to be a US citizen or lawful permanent resident. The department’s job qualifications page now states “An applicant must hold a United States citizenship, OR have legal permanent residency in the U.S., OR be a Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipient.”

There are also restrictions on DACA carrying firearms. The restriction was challenged by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) after the Los Angeles Police Department announced a similar initiative last year. Following the move, the Department of Justice said in February it is “ATF’s position” that “DACA recipients may also possess firearms and ammunition seized as evidence or for forfeiture if the possession is in connection with their official duties,” according to Fox News.

Earlier this year, the Democrat-controlled Washington State Legislature passed SB 6157, which allows DACA recipients to apply for civil service positions.

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