The Scottsdale Police Department has contracted with a local psychologist to provide psychological evaluations.
The Scottsdale City Council approved the contract with Dr. Jeni McCutcheon at its Sept. 8 meeting. Dr. McCutcheon’s services to the police department include preemployment candidate testing, non-preemployment well-being checks, military reintegration and post-shooting or use-of-force critical intervention.
According to a city staff report, psychological evaluations are critical in police hiring to comply with Arizona regulations; and to select only those candidates capable of performing the complex and challenging duties of a police officer.
Civilian employees also are exposed to highly sensitive and confidential information, and preemployment evaluations are used to help identify job suitability, the staff report stated.
The services also will be used when there are critical situations that require psychological screening and assessment after an incident to determine the employee’s fitness and safety, the staff report stated.
“Critical incident intervention is valuable in assisting officers in coping with their reactions and needs,” the report penned by Assistant Police Chief Helen Gandara stated.
The cost per evaluation is based on the type of assessment. Based on last year’s needs, the contracts’ expected cost is expected to be approximately $30,000 annually.
Current funding exists within the police department budget for the evaluation, Ms. Gandara stated.
According to her website, Dr. McCutcheon is a Phoenix-based board-certified psychologist in police and public safety psychology through the American Board of Professional Psychology.
Dr. McCutcheon states on her website that she has provided services to more than 50 Arizona police and public safety agencies.