Erdan proposes law that could require polygraph tests for police candidates

Candidates for sensitive and senior positions in the Israel Police would be required to undergo polygraph tests to determine whether they are linked to criminal elements or have any other potentially problematic skeletons in their closet, if a bill proposed by Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan is passed.
The legislation, announced by Erdan on Wednesday, was proposed “after it came to Erdan’s attention that over the years a number of people have enlisted in the police who had connections to criminals or were themselves involved in crime or disciplinary offenses,” according to a statement by the ministry.
The law would require every applicant for a sensitive or senior position in the police to undergo a polygraph test as part of an overall screening to ensure they are suited for the job.
The ministry said the Israel Police established a committee to determine how to use the information that arises during the screenings, though the Public Security Ministry said Wednesday that applicants will have criminal and disciplinary immunity for most of the information that arises in the screenings.
The proposed bill would put into law a new measure launched by National Police Commissioner Inspector-General Roni Alsheich when he began his term in December, which requires special pre-employment screenings for police applicants. The measure includes sending the applicants for polygraph tests if the screening uncovers potentially criminal or disciplinary issues.
The announcement of the proposed bill follows a series of embarrassing scandals for the Israel Police involving senior officials accused and convicted of sexual harassment and sexual assault, as well as a number of senior officers who have been personally linked to individuals who were the subject of serious police investigations.
Repairing the public image of the police and repairing behavioral norms of the organization is expected to be one of the main issues Alsheich will be responsible for tackling during his time as head of the agency.