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Union: Police dispatcher staffing levels too low to maintain

July 24, 2018

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — A police union in Maine’s capital city says the number of police dispatchers in the state’s public safety center is low enough that it could compromise public safety.

State employee union leaders said Monday that the dispatch center in Augusta, which also handles emergency calls for the southern portion of the state, is down to only 12 dispatchers out of 35 total positions. The Kennebec Journal reports the union says the Department of Public Safety has determined 15 should be the minimum number.

The union has submitted a petition signed by all current dispatchers, saying they are concerned about a failure to “recruit and retain staff.”

A Department of Public Safety spokesman says he couldn’t comment on the matter immediately.

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