I'm a Deputy Sheriff and Union Leader representing almost 500 law enforcement officers.
In my well known and heavily populated county in California, we are only required to qualify with our duty weapon twice per year. During the qualifications we only shoot 40-50 rounds and the entire "training session" lasts less than 10 minutes. We are required to qualify with shotguns and AR-15 patrol rifles only once per year.
Within the last two months I have witnessed the following:
A Deputy assigned to patrol needed to bring her patrol car in for service. Per department policy, the patrol shotgun needed to be removed before bringing the vehicle to the motor pool. I watched as she was unable to unload a standard Remington 870 pump shotgun. She then asked for help from a second deputy, who was also unable to show her how to unload the shotgun. To prevent an accidental discharge of the weapon, I stepped in an assisted her.
After a gang shooting, a Sheriff's Sergeant deployed an AR-15 patrol rifle in the subsequent search for the suspect. Once the suspect was in custody, I watched as the Sergeant, obviously unfamiliar with his weapon, asked two other Deputies how to make the weapon safe. I again stepped in to prevent an accidental discharge. However, when I attempted to unload the weapon, I discovered the Sergeant had failed to load a round in the chamber. He had searched for a gang shooting suspect with an unloaded weapon! If he had needed to use the weapon, it wouldn't have fired and the result could have been tragic.
As an elected union leader, I meet regularly with our Sheriff. I have expressed my concern for the lack of firearms training, but due to budget reasons, I don't see any policy changes in the future.