Pittsburgh Police Won’t Respond to Non-Emergency Calls as Cost-Reduction Measure

Due to staffing shortages, the Pittsburgh Police has made significant changes to their crime response protocol.

The Pittsburgh Bureau of Police, as of February 26, will no longer respond to non-emergency calls, crimes such as theft, harassment, criminal mischief, and burglary alarms.

According to Pittsburgh Bureau of Police Chief Larry Scirotto, their goal is to reduce the crime reports they receive from 200,000 to just 50,000.

“That allows our officers to be engaged in the community in a way, now they’re at the YMCA instead of sitting on the 10th Street bypass with a bike complaint,” Scirotto added.

Furthermore, the police department announced a drastic staffing schedule, saying in a press release that desk officers would not be available from 3:00 am to 7:00 am.

A Telephone Reporting Unit will replace desk officers who will receive non-violent incidents from residents over the phone.

For those residents who might need emergency assistance, they will have to go to 911 “blue phone” direct lines.

This transition, according to the police chief, will promote officer wellness. The Bureau will shift from eight-hour workdays to four 10-hour shifts each week.

“An additional day away from work each week to focus on family, friends, or outside pursuits is key to creating a healthy workforce and contributes to the Bureau’s goal of not only recruiting new officers but retaining them for the long haul,” says Scirotto.

Despite the chief’s assurance, the president of the Pittsburgh Police Officers’ Union said:

“The staffing plan designed by police command is a direct response to a seriously understaffed police department. Only time will tell if the plan works or if the Chief will need to pivot and modify his plan quickly.”

“The FOP [Fraternal Order of Police]. will be watching carefully for any contract violations that develop especially when non-emergency events come up such as St. Patrick’s Day, parades, large concerts, July 4th, etc. In short, the FOP believes that the police department is seriously over-committed and under-resourced.”

Residents took to social media to blast these changes.

Libs of Tiktok said: “Buy guns. Buy ammo. The police will not protect you.”

Another X user said, “This is a direct result of anti-police policies.”

“Imagine waking up to a burglar at 4 a.m., only to find the Pittsburgh police too busy to respond. From theft to harassment, they’re almost all clocking out between 3-7 a.m.,” wrote Kagens Looking Glass on X.






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