March 2, 2010
BRIDGEPORT — Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder, a Bridgeport-based law firm, today announced that it will help fund a drive to recruit more than 20 new officers for the Bridgeport Police Department.
The firm is offering individual grants to Bridgeport residents and others who have demonstrated a commitment to improving urban communities to cover the expenses of applying to become a police officer. The firm is also offering grants to community organizations that assist in recruiting qualified candidates from Bridgeport’s neighborhoods. The firm is making an initial commitment of $30,000.
“We have always believed that Bridgeport’s neighborhoods have the capacity to produce top quality police officers who are also sensitive to the needs of the community,” said Atty. Michael Koskoff of Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder. “We are happy to assist the City of Bridgeport in its ongoing effort to recruit city residents by paying the application costs of qualified individuals.”
Prospective candidates and organizations can request a grant by submitting an application on the firm’s website, www.koskoff.com, or by calling the firm’s Bridgeport office directly at (203) 583-8634. Candidates who receive a grant will be given vouchers to cover both the application cost and the cost of the required testing. Grant recipients will also receive assistance filling out applications and complying with application and testing deadlines.
For more than 30 years the law firm has represented the Bridgeport Guardians, an association of African-American police officers, in its drive to eliminate racial discrimination in the Police Department. “We have been working on behalf of the Bridgeport Guardians and the entire community for many decades and it is a relief to see the department starting to turn the corner,” said Atty. Sean McElligott of Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder. “Since the future of the department starts with today’s recruits, it is critical that this class of police officers is the best it can be.”
This past Friday, Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch announced details of a drive to immediately add new officers to the force, an addition made possible by federal stimulus funding.
“We have made the process as open and available as possible so that anyone who wants to apply to become a Bridgeport police officer can take advantage of this great opportunity,” Mayor Finch said.
Interested applicants must complete a two step process. First, the applicant must take and pass the Cooper Standard Physical Ability test administered by CHIP (Complete Health and Injury Prevention) currently scheduled for Bridgeport on the dates of May 15, 16, 22 and 23. This will entitle the applicant to a “CHIP card” and qualify the applicant to take the written test to be given this summer. For more information about the CHIP card, candidates can visit the company’s website at www.chip-inc.com or contact them at 203-235-5865.
The applicant must also submit a written application by May 28, 2010. The city is accepting online applications through its website at www.bridgeportct.gov, or, for a fee, through www.policeapp.com. Paper applications can also be picked up at the Civil Service office at City Hall, 45 Lyon Terrace, Bridgeport.
On Friday, the mayor stressed the importance of getting applications from residents of the city and noted that the city credits Bridgeport residents with “Residency Points” in the competitive application process. Bridgeport residents must submit a “Form RP-1” before the written test date requesting Residency Points.
Koskoff indicated that his ideal candidates are Bridgeport or area residents who have demonstrated a commitment to community involvement and improvement. “The ultimate goal is to have the police department reflect the overall composition of the community,” Koskoff said. “Our firm has always had the same goal as the mayor – that is, to continue to improve and strengthen our city – and we are delighted to now aid in his effort to better the police force and our entire community,” Koskoff added.
Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder has offices in Bridgeport, Danbury and New Haven. The nationally known law firm has achieved record verdicts for people who suffer serious personal injuries or economic harm from medical malpractice, violation of their civil or constitutional rights, dangerous products, negligence, drunk drivers, corporate or governmental abuse and commercial misconduct.