MADISON COUNTY, Ky. (LEX 18) — Governor Andy Beshear watched 28 new officers and deputies take the Law Enforcement Oath of Honor on Thursday in Richmond. The officers graduated from basic training after completing 800 hours of training over 20 weeks.
“As your Governor, I am honored to have each of you serving and protecting all Kentuckians,” Gov. Beshear said to the recruits during the graduation ceremony. “Thank you, only a select few among us are called to serve the Commonwealth of Kentucky in this role, and I am grateful to have each and every one of you on Team Kentucky.”
Kentucky and the country are currently going through a lot of changes right now. After the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and others, protesters have demanded changes in policing. Beshear said the state must address those calls for action.
"As a state, we must work to address the challenges we face," said Beshear. "We must work to build more trust and to create and maintain safety within our communities."
As Police Departments and Sheriff's Offices across Kentucky work to do that, many are facing problems finding people who want to do this job. The governor didn't shy away from the fact that a lot will be expected of the new officers, but he encouraged them to help Kentucky move forward.
"This is a tough job right now. I get that. But we are at a place and a time where I know we all want to be able to move forward," said Beshear. "We all want to build and rebuild trust. We all want safe communities where every single Kentucky child can grow up feeling not only safe but to think they have so much potential in front of them."
The Department of Criminal Justice Training says it provides officers with best practices, the latest technology training, and legal information to protect the diverse communities they serve. Major training areas include patrol procedures, physical training, vehicle operations, defensive tactics, criminal law, traffic and DUI, firearms, criminal investigations, cultural awareness, bias-related crimes, and responses to crisis situations.