PPB cites staffing shortage for canceling youth camp - KPTV - FOX 12

PPB cites staffing shortage for canceling youth camp

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

The Portland Police Bureau said Monday in a release that a summer sports and education youth camp the department has held for more than 20 years has been canceled this year due to staffing issues.

Citing budget reductions and drops in the numbers of available officers, PPB officials said the one-week camp planned for June will not happen, since the department would have had to worked officers overtime to maintain minimum staffing levels.

PPB Chief Lawrence P. O'Dea III thanked officers for their prior support of the camp, and credited their efforts to enhance the lives of Portland youth.

"More than 7,500 youth have benefited from the camp throughout the years, and today, there are several former camp participants who have gone on to become college athletes, police officers, teachers and other outstanding members of the community,” he said in the release. “I am proud of the Bureau's commitment to making a difference in the lives of children."

The Portland Police Association, the union which represents PPB officers, has been campaigning since October to to increase staffing, and claimed a survey of members in January showed that officer morale was very low.

Earlier this year, organizers of the Rose Festival noted their attempts to replace the Rock and Roll Half-Marathon were stalled over police staffing issues.

The PPB noted that it hoped to be able to budget for the camp in the future, but for 2016 it is encouraging the community to look into options from the Portland Parks and Recreation Department and summer camps from the Boys and Girls Club.

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