WASHINGTON (DC News Now) — The Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) needs officers, and in order to recruit them, Mayor Muriel Bowser and Chief Robert J. Contee III said the city will offer a $20,000 hiring bonus.

In addition to announcing the new incentive, Bowser and Contee said there will be an emphasis on recruiting women and all people who live in Washington.

The incentive is part of the mayor’s Fiscal Year 2023 budget, which funds an additional 347 new officers in FY23 and goes into effect on October 1, 2022. The administration expedited the program so that MPD could add it to recruitment efforts right away. 

“We know how critical it is to have a fully staff and resourced MPD, and that requires us to hire strong talent and to retain experienced officers. These hiring bonuses will help MPD recruit and hire more officers to keep our city safe,” said Mayor Bowser. “My message to the community is this: If you’re looking for a way to serve our community, if you like interacting with people, if you like helping people, if you want to work at the best police department in the country, then go to joinmpd.dc.gov and consider a career at MPD.”

Applicants who are qualified will be eligible to receive the $20,000 bonus in addition to existing benefits, such as the $6,000 housing stipend. The bonus will be paid in two installments: half as an initial hiring bonus and the and the other half upon completion of the police academy.

Currently, the starting salary at MPD is $60,199, which means that with the new bonus, first-year officers will be eligible to earn more than $80,000.

“The police department leading the nation’s capital is now proudly making strides during a competitive job market by offering our recruits incentives, that quite frankly can change lives of so many wanting to serve the community here in DC,” said Chief Contee. “It has been one of my visions for the department to retain members and take care of our own, who proudly show up to work each and every day; and Mayor Bowser’s announcement today is just one step we have planned for our current and future members. Our goal is that these recruiting incentives will create a pipeline to success for residents and for our youth, who too often find themselves in harm’s way with illegal firearms and crime.” 

To apply for a position at Metropolitan Police Department or for more information on qualifications, recruitment efforts, and the Cadet Corps Program, click here.