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Background Investigation

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A thorough background investigation is required of all public safety dispatchers before being hired. The goal of the investigation is to verify that the applicant has no past behaviors indicating unsuitability to perform public safety dispatching duties. The background investigation must include a check of motor vehicle records and a search of local, state, and federal fingerprint files to determine any criminal record.

The Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) outlines 15 essential job dimensions that represent the major and critical areas of performance for entry-level law enforcement public safety dispatchers. The background investigation will specifically seek out information that will help us determine if a candidate possesses these skills.

All applicants will be required to complete the POST Personal History Statement as part of the background investigation packet.

To protect the confidentiality of sources contacted during the course of a background investigation, it is the policy of the Department of Emergency Communications not to discuss the content or nature of information contained in a background investigation once it has began. An applicant will simply be told he or she passed or failed the background investigation. Applicants will be notified in writing of the results.

The information below may be useful to prospective applicants before participating in the hiring process for the Communications Dispatcher position:

Immediate Disqualifiers:

  • Felony convictions.
  • Lying about any portion of the background.
  • Omitting any requested or required information.
  • Falsifying information.

The following types of illegal drug use or possession are considered automatic disqualifiers in the pre-employment selection process for all Communication Dispatcher positions:

  • Any adult use or possession of a drug classified as hallucinogens, LSD, Mushrooms, Heroin, intravenous illegal use.
  • Any adult use or possession of marijuana within the one (1) year prior to application for employment.
  • Any other illegal adult use or possession of drugs not mention above (including cocaine) within the five (5) years prior to application for employment.
  • Any adult manufacture or cultivation of a drug.
  • Failure to divulge any information about the illegal use or possession of drugs to the Department during the background investigation.

The disqualification of a Communications Dispatcher candidate for the following types of illegal drug use or possession will be considered in relationship to the overall background of that individual:

  • Any illegal juvenile use or possession of a drug.
  • Any illegal adult use of a drug that does not meet the criteria of the automatic disqualifiers above; e.g., marijuana use longer than 1 year ago or cocaine use longer than 5 years ago.

Irresponsible credit history:

  • Bad credit is not an automatic disqualifier. If an applicant had bad credit in the past and has taken responsible steps to repair it including bankruptcy, the applicant may be considered for employment. If the background investigation reveals that the applicant has handled his or her credit obligations irresponsibly, the applicant may be disqualified.

If you have any questions regarding personal matters that you feel may be disqualifying, we encourage you to call us at (831) 759-6723. 
Conversations with us are strictly confidential.