GETTING RECRUITED To become a member of the Philadelphia Police Department, you must:• Be a resident of the City of Philadelphia a year prior to your appointment date. However, non- residents have to establish residency at least six(6) months after promotion to Police Ofﬁcer I.• Hold and Obtain a valid drivers license when you are invited to the one day orientation. Also, if your license is suspended or revoked you automatically fail, if you have outstanding fees for trafﬁc violations, you must make arrangements with trafﬁc Court. Also, persons with a Non-Drivers ID must have a valid drivers license as well.• You must be at least 19 years of age, and have some proof of your high school diploma or ﬁnal GED. However, the department does not require college education, but they recommend that new recruits either continue their studies to ﬁnish a degree or goto college to get a degree.• Good reading and writing skills are a necessity to executing your duties as a police ofﬁcer.
MORE REQUIREMENTS• All new recruits must take a physical ﬁtness test to ensure that they are in the 30th percentile of their age/weight class.• All recruits must have at least a ninth grade reading level, which is determined through the Nelson- Denny Reading Test.
BECOMING CERTIFIED• Be 19 years of age or older as stated before .• Possess a high school diploma or GED.• Be a citizen of the United States.• Be free from convictions of disqualifying offenses.• Be personally examined by a Pennsylvania licensed physician. APPLICANTS SHALL BE FREE FROM THE ADDICTIVE OR EXCESSIVE USE OF EITHER ALCOHOL OR DRUGS, SHALL BE FREE FROM THE USE OF ILLEGAL CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES. APPLICANTS PHYSICAL CONDITION SHALL BE EXPECTED TO WITHSTAND SIGNIFICANT CARDIOVASCULAR STRESS, SHALL BE FREE FROM ANY DEBILITATING CONDITIONS. APPLICANTS SHALL BE FREE OF VISUAL ABNORMALITIES. APPLICANTS MAY NOT BE MISSING ANY EXTREMITIES. APPLICANTS SHALL BE FREE FROM ANY OTHER SIGNIFICANT PHYSICAL LIMITATIONS OR DISABILITIES.• Be personally examined by a Pennsylvania licensed psychologist.• Be subject to a thorough background investigation.• Successfully complete a basic police training course given at a commissioned, certiﬁed school.
SALARY• When you start the job as a police ofﬁcer in the Academy, you will start out making $40,036/yr. (which is $1,533.95 bi-weekly).• After graduating the academy as a Police Ofﬁcer, you will then have a pay increase to $42,813/yr. ($1,640.34 bi-weekly). There are also scheduled pay increases to the present maximum of $55,603/ yr. ($ 2,130.38 bi-weekly.)• You can also earn overtime which is paid as time and a half. There are also many opportunities for a promotion which will also have an increase in salary.• Your salary does not include your annual uniform allowance or holiday time.
HEALTH BENEFITS• You have a choice between two different Healthcare providers, Bluecross/ Blue Shield or AETNA US health care. Either one of these providers will be chosen for you and your eligible dependents on your ﬁrst day of training. The cost of the plan will be deducted from your Bi-Weekly salary.• The FOP(union) administers the dental, prescription, and eye plans. With the dental plan, you and your dependents are covered up to $2,500 per year per person. And the prescription plan also covers you and your eligible dependents, you pay $5.00 per prescription with the plan. The eye plan covers you and your eligible dependents for one pair of glasses per year at a participating doctor. These health beneﬁts start when you enter the Police Academy, and the plan will be explained to you at that time.
RETIREMENT• Each member of the Philadelphia Police Department will have a pension set-up in their name. Your pension payment will be deducted from your bi-weekly paycheck, and you will start paying into your pension on your ﬁrst day of training.• For your ﬁrst twenty years of service, you will be credited with 2.2% per year towards your pension. After an excess of twenty years, you will receive 2.0% of your average compensation per year towards your pension.• After twenty-ﬁve years and at the age of ﬁfty, a member of the Police can retire with a total of 54% of their average total compensation.• You will have to choose a beneﬁciary for these funds as well.
DEFERRED COMPENSATION (457B-PLAN)• Joining this program is voluntary.• There is a $25-$300 deduction per pay.• The money in this account is tax deferred until you retire and take the money out of the account.• This money may be placed into various interest sensitive investment options such as mutual funds and money market funds.• As a member of the Philadelphia Police Department, there is no deduction for Social Security beneﬁts, so this is a great tool for you to use. You will also need to select a beneﬁciary for the deferred compensation.
PROMOTION• To qualify for a promotion to a corporal or detective within the department, you must ﬁrst ﬁnish your ﬁrst year as a Police Ofﬁcer, and when this time comes, there will be an announcement of the next test for the promotion. You will also have a 10% pay raise as a result of passing the test.• To qualify for a promotion to a Sergeant, you must complete your ﬁrst two years as a police ofﬁcer and wait for the next test comes around. When it does, there will be information of what books to read/study for it. As a result of passing you will receive an approx. 14% pay raise. Also, your seniority has an effect on your score as well.• Later in your career you may seek the role of Lieutenant, Captain, Inspector, etc... Each advancement comes with a higher pay raise.• Your Beneﬁts also change when you hold the ranking of Captain and above.
RIDE-ALONG• To do my ride-along, I had to contact the community relations ofﬁcer of the 3rd district.• When I went to do this ride-along, I had to sign waivers claiming I knew the risks of doing this job, and then was later equipped with a ballistic vest.• During my ride-along, I had the opportunity to ride with Sgt. Blair, whom was the supervisor of one “squad” within this district• We responded to a few calls, but nothing serious.
INTERVIEW• During the ride-along, I asked Sgt. Blair how long he has been a cop.• I found out that he has been an ofﬁcer for 18 years and is going to soon retire in Nov. 2014.• I then asked what inﬂuenced him to be a cop.• He said he originally wanted to goto law school to be a lawyer, but found out that the law school only takes the top 2% of people who wanted to do that.