ST. LOUIS – Starting this weekend, officers within the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department will work longer shifts.

Officers who work on weekends will be scheduled for mandatory 12-hour shifts. Retiring St. Louis Police Chief John Hayden announced the new policy last month.

The change will impact officers who work on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Previously, officers who worked these days were scheduled for an afternoon shift from 3-11 p.m. or a night shift from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m.

Officials say the change is designed to put more officers on the streets and help combat crime over the summer months. At one point last year, Hayden told FOX2 his department was down more than 150 officers.