As part of general reviewing of laws on policing in Iceland, Minister of Justice Björn Bjarnason has given police departments permission to hire an increased number of district police officers, up to 250 countrywide.
The Capital Region Police department can now hire up to 80 district officers. Before the law amendment only eight district police officers could be hired to that department, Morgunbladid reports.
From the demonstration in Reykjavík on October 10, 2008. Copyright: Icelandic Photo Agency.
The same applied to other police departments in Iceland, but after the amendment, Sudurnes Police (where Keflavík International Airport is located) can recruit 40 district officers and the police departments in Akureyri, Akranes and Selfoss 16 each.
In other jurisdictions police departments are only entitled to eight district officers as they were before the law amendment.
District police officers tend to general police duties, including keeping order at festivals and at other events where a number of people gather.
Police chiefs can call for the assistance of district officers to cope with heavy workload, as an addition to their permanent workforce.