Law enforcement continues to be a popular career choice in Japan. Outside of the obvious risks involved it’s a stable job compared to the corporate rat race. However, people who are simply interested in job security often aren’t the ideal candidates to become police officers. Incidence of resignation is on the rise in the forces across Japan, with disgruntled men and women alike citing “being tired of chasing people” and “scary” crime scenes as reasons for leaving.

Combine this with the impending mass retirement of the baby boom generation, and police are facing a significant human resources crisis in the near future. So they have recently been looking at new ways to hook new, and more importantly the right kind of, candidates.

A few good women

More and more attention has been given to the importance of having more active female police officers. Said to be more effective at handling cases of domestic violence and stalking, police agencies all over the country are eager to balance out the genders by recruiting more females officers.

To help open the doors for more women in the force, law enforcement admissions are loosening the height and weight requirements to apply. Furthermore, some departments like the Gifu Prefectural Police have set up Policewomen Associations.

Open houses are an increasing trend for potential recruits to get hands-on experience in police work. However, these groups hold sessions exclusive to women who can interact with active policewomen and better understand the vital role women can play in serving the community.

Dead or alive?

Of course, when it comes to bolstering your number of applicants a sexy ad campaign is a tried and tested method. Most recently Aomori Prefectural Police among others have been tagging along with the upcoming remake of Robocop.

“Get serious about zero crime or accidents in Aomori Prefecture.”

I haven’t seen much of the new Robocop, but based on the original dystopian look at the future of policing it doesn’t seem like a ringing endorsement to join. That being said, these police amendments to movie posters can be a stretch at times, such as the other Robocop posters reminding you to lock your car doors. And then there is this message against drunk driving on an adapted Mission Impossible: Ghost Recon poster from the Fukuoka Prefectural Police.

“The mission: ‘No drinking and driving.’ Eliminate drunk driving! Only you can carry out this mission.”

Not relying simply on blockbuster movie franchises, police departments are trying to create original ad campaigns to pique the interest of young prospective officers. Meet Mie Prefectural Police’s MKB68 (Mie Keisatsu Boshu [police recruitment] 68 people wanted).

Any skill will do

Perhaps tired of applicants simply looking for a steady pay-check, prefectural police departments are searching for people with a true calling to serve and protect. For example, Osaka Prefectural Police have been developing a self-recommendation style of recruitment.

Under this system, applicants who complete an entry form listing the skills they possess will be given preferential treatment if they pass the physical and cognitive examinations. Osaka Police stress that any skill that you feel might be of service in law enforcement is acceptable, be it athletics, finance, IT, or entertainment talents.

Although a sports background is clearly the most desired, recruiters are primarily looking for the sheer desire to join. It seems that these days, fewer and fewer people are able to cope with the strict training and discipline it takes to be a member of the police force. So be you a woman, cyborg, or banker, passion is always the most important quality to have when it comes to law enforcement.

Source: Naver Matome (Japanese)
Images: Fukuoka Police, Aomori Police, Photozou