Honolulu Police Chief Joe Logan says he plans to extend a pilot program that allows officers to work three 12-hour shifts per week so he can further gauge its effectiveness amid an officer staffing shortage.
Logan made his first appearance before the Honolulu Police Commission Wednesday after he was officially sworn in during a small closed-door ceremony last week.
The 3/12 program was rolled out in April in HPD’s District 5, which includes Kalihi and Kapalama, and District 4, which includes Kailua, Kaneohe and Kahuku, in an attempt to increase officer coverage of the districts as the department attempts to fill approximately 300 officer vacancies.
“They’re averaging about 90% vacancy fills, or filling all the beats, within District 4,” Logan said. “District 5 is not quite the same because they implemented it a little different.”
The trial program was initially set to run until June 25, but Logan said he has extended it until the end of the year to appraise its effectiveness before deciding whether to implement it across the department.
Logan said he would be collecting data to determine whether the program will cost the department more in overtime, whether it leads to more arrests and citations and whether it causes increased levels of officer burnout.
“Because you’re going to work 12 hours a day, perhaps you’re fatigued and then you would see an increase in motor vehicle accidents involving officers,” Logan said. “We don’t see that right now.”
Logan said if the new schedule is implemented across the department it would initially apply to patrol divisions while he and other members of HPD leadership consider how to schedule other divisions.
“We’re going to take a look across the board at what builds morale and what helps employees,” Logan said.
Logan added that he also plans to take a look at other police departments that have implemented similar schedules.
“I know there are a number of departments that have implemented 3/12,” Logan said. “Some departments don’t like it and some departments do, but I need to find out more information.”
The chief’s inaugural report to commissioners came hours after he attended a promotion ceremony for 17 HPD officers, including two who were promoted to lieutenant, seven who were promoted to sergeant, two who were recognized as new detectives and six who reached the rank of corporal.
Logan told commissioners that the promotions were based on criteria that included a civil service test, the officers’ educational background and interviews with HPD leadership.
Citing previous complaints of favoritism in the department, Commissioner Richard Parry prompted Logan to comment on the fairness of the promotional process.
“I seriously doubt there’s much validity to that,” Logan said. “We know everyone in the department here, so the team that’s interviewing may know people and there may be a perception that there’s favoritism going on, but how would you actually determine that?”
Pointing to Logan’s unannounced swearing-in ceremony, Commissioner Doug Chin cited additional criticism regarding HPD’s transparency and encouraged Logan to be open with the public and media.
“You have a big ship to turn around,” Chin said. “You may not be the cause for the perception of what people are feeling, but you’re now responsible for it.”
Logan responded by saying that he plans to livestream all HPD events moving forward and added that there would be a more formal swearing-in ceremony that would be open to the media next Wednesday.
“That is a much larger event I looked at with the media invited, but I absolutely agree,” Logan said. “We will take a look at anything we do that involves all of us on the fourth floor (of HPD headquarters) and provide a live video feed so that it’s to the public and we can see it.”
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