SAPD recruiters tackle salary, benefits questions

Department continues to recruit while union fights with city


SAN ANTONIO – The San Antonio Police Department held a recruiting event at UTSA Wednesday.

Beyond the usual "What do you do?" and "How do you like being a police officer?" questions, recruiters answered questions about starting salaries and health benefits. The inquiries are due in large part to the ongoing battle between the police union and city over the cost of providing health care to police officers.

"We give them all the information that we can today," said Officer Yvonne Padilla. "We understand things can change in the future. Things can change anywhere you go. We understand that. We're going to be straightforward with our interested applicants."

Jared Gore came to the recruiting fair having already done some research. He said the battle over benefits has had little impact on his desire to join the force.

"San Antonio has one of the higher-paid departments in the nation as far as (cost of living) goes out of some of the other (departments) I've looked at," said Gore. "(Health care benefits) is something that you think about, but hopefully everything will work out in the end."

Esmerelda Alvarez attended the career fair with her son, Manuel. He's always wanted to be a police officer, which is why she's watching the battle over benefits with a close eye.

"It is extremely important," she said. "They put their lives on the line every day and that is a benefit that they extremely have earned and deserve.