Almost two-thirds of police officers in Mexico were unable to demonstrate in a performance review that they are properly qualified or have the required competencies to protect the public, says a report by the Federal Auditor’s Office (ASF).
The review by the National Public Security System (SNSP) was aimed at addressing problems associated with the lack of training of police forces and the application of trustworthiness tests.
The ASF indicated that it had evaluated 99% of officers on active duty with the Professional Career Service and found that while 87% had passed integrity tests only 34.9% provided information regarding their training.
Consequently, the ASF said, “it was not possible to validate the competencies of the remaining 65.1% to carry out their duties in order to protect the public.”
The same report said 469,792 police officers were on active duty with the SNSP last year, which means that there are 3.8 officers for every 1,000 inhabitants.
Of those, 71.4% form part of the Professional Career Service and were identified as a priority for the application of trust evaluations by the ASF.
The ASF stressed that in response to its findings, the SNSP has implemented control mechanisms to ensure that trustworthy, truthful and timely information could be provided about their training programs.
Over 386 million pesos (US $21.5 million) were designated for training and evaluation programs for police officers in 2016 so as to strengthen public security institutions and improve security and justice.
The audit results also showed that the SNSP exceeded its training goals in 2016 by over 15%.
A total of 117,237 officers from all 32 states received initial, ongoing or command training in 948 different courses.
However, the federal auditor also established that the SNSP did not have a diagnosis of police training needs.
Source: Milenio (sp)