Swiss canton to allow internationals to join the police

Swiss canton to allow internationals to join the police

A Swiss canton has become the latest to allow long-term expats and residents of Switzerland to join the police. Canton Graubünden in the east of the country will now allow holders of C-residence permits to apply to join the force, because of continuing staff shortages.

To plug staff shortages, expats can join the police in Graubünden

In a statement, authorities in Graubünden announced that they would start to allow long-term residents of the canton to join the police force. The branch of the emergency services currently has 400 officers, with 15 to 20 people joining the force every single year.

Speaking to Swissinfo, a spokesperson said that in order to find enough recruits, especially in remote areas in the mountains, councils have started to abolish minimum height and age requirements. Now, the state authorities want to go one step further and allow people who aren’t Swiss citizens to apply.

Expats will be sent through a rigorous 2-year training course

From now, anyone in Graubünden with a C-residence or “Settlement” permit will be able to apply to join the police force. However, the authorities were quick to say that applicants will be sent through a rigorous training and testing process to see whether they have the physical capabilities and language skills to do the job. “The high personal demands on prospective police officers remain," they assured.

With this step, Graubünden becomes the fifth Swiss canton to allow expats to join the police force. So far, only Neuchâtel, Jura, Basel-Stadt and Schwyz allow internationals to don the uniform.

Thumb image credit: / Michael Derrer Fuchs

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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