ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The Albany Police Department swore in six new officers on Monday. Police Chief Eric Hawkins said the new hires come at a time when recruitment for law enforcement is down across the country.

The police chief said the new members will help relieve some of the pressure current officers are facing.

“We are still maintaining minimum staffing,” he said. “We are still doing what needs to be done as responding to calls for service, but officers are working a lot harder, they are working a lot more. So by getting more officers in the department right now, it allows us to remove some of the workload from the existing officers we have.”

The new hires will now head to the academy and are expected to be in the field within the next eight months.