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Border Patrol Recruiting at Military Bases

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

The Border Patrol is looking for a few thousand good men and women at U.S. military bases in Germany.  The Border Patrol is under pressure to hire an additional 2,500 agents by the end of the year.  KPBS reporter Amy Isackson has the story.

It's the first time the Border Patrol has ventured abroad to recruit agents.

In 2006, President George Bush announced the Border Patrol would add 6,000 agents by the end of 2008.

Lloyd Easterling is an Assistant Chief with the Border Patrol. He says they have a ways to go to meet that goal.

Lloyd Easterling, Border Patrol: We've become more aggressive. For instance, the team that is going over to Germany. What it is, is it makes sense. People getting out of the military need a job. And it is something that still allows them to continue the defense and the mindset of defending the homeland.

The Border Patrol has taken other measures to attract recruits. They raised the age limit for new agents from 36 to 39. They also slashed a month and a half off training for agents who speak Spanish.

The agency's attrition rate has been a stumbling block for hiring. About one in 11 agents quit since last October.

Amy Isackson, KPBS News.

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