Michigan State Police recruiting minorities and women

Posted: 6:35 PM, Sep 15, 2016
Updated: 2016-09-16 09:06:55-04

Miguel Mendez is a Michigan State Police recruit and his ethnicity is a big reason why he wanted to join MSP.

"I'm Hispanic," says Mendez, "I wanted to actually set an example for them and actually show that we can improve the Hispanic community."

Being a minority, Mendez hopes that his presence on the force will help facilitate a better relationship with the public.

"One man can change a whole perspective on how the community looks at you, so if there are minorities out there that could second guess what law enforcement does, I am here to explain that we are here to help you guys," explains Mendez.

MSP believes a diverse workforce will help connect with the community and that's why it's trying to recruit women and minorities.

"It helps sort of just ease the mind of people that we come in contact with," claims Lt. Robert Hendrix, the commander of MSP's recruiting and selection section. "It's a little more comfortable sometimes when people interact with people that look like them."

That comfort is part of what inspired Mendez to join:

"Whenever you're a little kid or a teenager and you can see a Hispanic or a, you know, African American actually in the Michigan State Police, it will influence you into finding out more information."

MSP right now is in need of recruits, with more troopers retiring than joining, and it's not just looking for women and minorities.

"We just want to make sure that we get good, quality folks in our agency," says Lt. Hendrix.

As long as you meet the minimum requirements, Lt. Hendrix says the training can make you a good trooper.