LAS VEGAS -- Women now make up a slightly greater percentage of full-time police and correctional officers at Metro Police than they did 10 years ago, thanks in part to a more aggressive recruiting effort by the agency.
Of the 3,425 police and correctional officers, 409, or 11.9 percent, are female. In 2002, when there were a combined 1,956 sworn officers, 219, or 11.2 percent, were women. Rapid population growth in Clark County accounted for the increase in the police force over that period.
The male-female breakdown among Metro officers is close to national averages, according to the FBI Uniform Crime Report for 2010, which has the latest available data on law enforcement employment by gender. That year, 11.8 percent of all full-time officers nationwide were female, but the figure was slightly higher -- 13.4 percent -- in metropolitan counties.
Metro's recruitment website, Protectthecity.com, includes a video for women interested in joining the department. The video features three female officers who balance family life with their Metro duties. There is also this statement:
"Our philosophy with recruiting quality female applicants starts with communicating to each and every woman interested in a career in law enforcement that your life as you know it, and as you see it in the future, will not change when it comes to family. This job will be very good to you and your family and will help you provide for them during your entire career and beyond.
"Furthermore, you will be afforded a great salary and benefits package, the opportunity for advancement, and the pride that comes with serving your community."
Going back to 2002, the number of sworn female police and correctional officers at Metro has increased 86.8 percent compared to 73.6 percent for men. The difference is even more pronounced for police officers alone, with the number of women growing 95.8 percent from 121 to 237. That compares to a 74.5 percent increase in male officers, from 1,386 to 2,418.