DES MOINES – In 2021 the Urbandale Police Department joined the ’30 by 30′ initiative aiming to have 30% of the officers at the department be women by 2030. Just two years later they are already close to that goal.

“Urbandale is currently sitting at 25%” Officer Holly Pickett, the Urbandale Police Department’s Public Information Officer said, “We started at 15 so just above the national average of just 12%. We have done primarily the best job of retention.”.

Officer Pickett said that while recruiting officers is important, retaining female officers is where the department makes most of its gains and that comes down to a police departments culture.

“If you don’t have good culture within your agency then people don’t stay just like in the corporate world if people are unhappy they can find jobs elsewhere in todays society. every law enforcement in this metro area as well as every agency probably in America right now is looking for help and good help is going to find good law enforcement.” Officer Pickett said.

Officer Pickett said that there are many benefits to a more diverse police department. Currently 37% of the departments officers are minorities, which includes female officers.

“It is very important for the community to know that when they call they can relate to someone that they can have a conversation and that person maybe will understand their culture they’ll understand that they might have problems that arise because of cultural differences that they’ll be able to really relate to them and then maybe their outcome will be better because of that,” Officer Pickett said.

The Urbandale Police Department is expected to hit its 30 by 30 goal.