Bilingual? HPD recruiting volunteer translators to ride along with officers

Local
This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.
Data pix.

HOUSTON — Are you fluent in a language other than English? If so, you just may be on the Houston Police Department's most wanted list!

"We're looking for volunteers that can speak fluent Spanish, Vietnamese, Korean, Chinese, Arabic, Urdu or Hindi," Police Chief Art Acevedo said.

On Monday, the department announced a new program called Communicators On Patrol, or C.O.P.

HPD is partnering with the University of Houston Downtown for C.O.P.  Applicants must be at least 18.

"The volunteers will board a police vehicle, assigned to partner up with a police officer, and respond to calls for service. And when the need arises, they will translate for that victim," Acevedo said. "The goals of the program is having non-police personnel, i.e. civilians, connect and maintain attain a high level of cooperation from non-English speaking members of the public."

Whether responding to calls from crime victims or witnesses, police need to get accurate info. In a city diverse as ours, though, the cops and the callers don`t always speak the same language. That`s where the trained fluent communicators can help.  "These volunteers have actually passed a background investigation with the Houston Police Department,  and these folks have said hey I want to make a difference.  They can actually help us deescalate and or prevent any type of misunderstanding."

Right now, about 30 people have qualified. The department hopes to grow the program.

So, do you think you've got the right stuff to be a C.O.P.?

Stay connected! Download the CW39 NewsFix app for iOS or Android devices and the CW39 Weather app for iOS or Android devices.

LATEST VIDEO

Peace march planned in honor of George Floyd

Thumbnail for the video titled "Peace march planned in honor of George Floyd"

Four Bears In A Box

Thumbnail for the video titled "Four Bears In A Box"

Brother of George Floyd Speaks In Minneapolis

Thumbnail for the video titled "Brother of George Floyd Speaks In Minneapolis"

Officer Struck at Emancipation

Thumbnail for the video titled "Officer Struck at Emancipation"

Take a “pie in the face” and help local non-profit Camp for All

Thumbnail for the video titled "Take a “pie in the face” and help local non-profit Camp for All"
More Video

Days

Hours

Minutes

Seconds

Latest Weather Forecast

More Weather

Don't Miss

Latest

More Morning Dose

Popular