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Article

Mary Cuadrado

Questions a sample of criminal justice students to show that when officer competence is evaluated in terms of professionalism rather than confrontational issues, bias…

Abstract

Questions a sample of criminal justice students to show that when officer competence is evaluated in terms of professionalism rather than confrontational issues, bias against women is not found, whereas evaluation variables based on potentially violent situations promote the belief that women are not as well fitted as men for constant exposure to violent confrontation. Cautions against the danger of presenting discrete images of a male “brute force” and a female “professional force”. Finds indications that increased recruitment of women, gender sensitivity training and a higher level of officers’ education may change existing attitudes toward the police.

Details

American Journal of Police, vol. 14 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0735-8547

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Article

Ronald J. Burke and Aslaug Mikkelsen

Although many studies have considered burnout in the human services, little research on burnout has focused on police officers. This study aims to examine the relationship…

Abstract

Purpose

Although many studies have considered burnout in the human services, little research on burnout has focused on police officers. This study aims to examine the relationship between burnout and police officers' attitudes towards the use of force and attitudes towards the use of social skills to solve problems.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected from 766 police officers in Norway using anonymously completed questionnaires.

Findings

Police officers reporting higher levels of cynicism also held more favorable attitudes towards the use of force; police officers reporting higher levels of professional efficacy also held more favorable attitudes towards the use of social skills to solve problems.

Research limitations/implications

Future research needs to examine these findings in other countries and using longitudinal research designs.

Practical implications

Organizations are advised to monitor burnout levels of front‐line service workers and introduce structures and processes to reduce burnout levels.

Originality/value

This study has value for senior police management and employment counselors.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 28 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Article

Michael G. Breci

Suggests that policing is changing to a more responsive, community oriented approach which requires a change in the skills and knowledge of line officers. Departments need…

Abstract

Suggests that policing is changing to a more responsive, community oriented approach which requires a change in the skills and knowledge of line officers. Departments need to develop long range plans for ensuring that police officers are prepared to meet the challenges of working with the community and solving problems. Continuing education and college courses provide a framework for bringing about change within the department. Presents an exploratory study which examines a random sample of Minnesota officers’ perceptions of the role of their agencies in upgrading officers’ skills and knowledge for the transition to community‐oriented policing. Results indicate that the majority of the continuing education completed by officers had little to do with developing skills associated with community‐oriented policing. Furthermore, officers contended that agencies were not generally supportive of their continuing college educations. Officers’ perceptions varied by the type of agency they belonged to, the size of the agency, their rank and their educational level.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 20 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Book part

Catherine S. Daus and Shanique Brown

Law enforcement is a stressful profession. Police officers are faced with emotionally exhausting events on a daily basis and are required to control negative emotions in…

Abstract

Law enforcement is a stressful profession. Police officers are faced with emotionally exhausting events on a daily basis and are required to control negative emotions in an effort to conduct their jobs effectively. This chapter explores the emotions experienced by police officers and seeks to understand the emotional labor of this profession. Twenty semi-structured interviews were conducted with police officers to garner information about the role of emotional expression and suppression on the job. The results revealed several themes, such as the importance of anger to the job of police officer and the emotional climate within the police force. Understanding emotion work and the management of emotions among law enforcement officers is an important contribution to improving the well-being and performance of police officers. Our research results call for further exploration of the role of emotions in law enforcement.

Details

Experiencing and Managing Emotions in the Workplace
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-676-8

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Article

Erica Ceka and Natalia Ermasova

This study investigates the relationship between police officer's willingness to use Employee Assistance Program (EAP) and their perceptions about stress and help-seeking…

Abstract

Purpose

This study investigates the relationship between police officer's willingness to use Employee Assistance Program (EAP) and their perceptions about stress and help-seeking in policing, considering the effect of gender and ethnicity in this association.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey of 431 Illinois police officers is used to measure officer's perceptions about help-seeking and organizational stressors. The conditional PROCESS modeling (Hayes, 2012) was employed to analyze the hypothesized mediation model. The ANOVA test was used to determent the effect of gender and ethnicity on organizational stressors in policing.

Findings

Findings suggest police officer's willingness to use EAP is shaped by the perceived negative effect of stress on promotion through the mediator, confidence in their departments to receive adequate assistance, with noticeable gender and ethnic differences. The analysis demonstrated that female police officers feel stressed because of unfair promotional opportunities and poor relationships with supervisors. Female police officers are less willing to apply for the EAP services to mitigate stress than male police officers. The findings reveal that ethnicity is a significant predictor of the police officers' willingness to apply for EAP services to mitigate stress.

Research limitations/implications

The current study is limited by its focus on only one police department located in the Illinois, USA. This may limit the generalizability of the results. The cross-sectional nature of data used to draw conclusions and variation in departments' characteristics and compositions could influence results.

Practical implications

The research has practical implications for those who are interested to understand organizational stressors and perceptions on help-seeking in policing. This study provides suggestions for police administrators to make effort in creating more sensitive working environment to reduce stressors for female police officers and representatives of ethnic groups.

Originality/value

The research unveils the significance of officer's confidence in their departments in modifying their willingness to use EAP, revealing the effect of organizational stressors on confidence. The study adds empirical evidence to existing research on impact of gender and ethnicity on their willingness to use EAP.

Details

Policing: An International Journal, vol. 44 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Book part

Ashley K. Farmer and Ivan Y. Sun

This chapter examines how citizen journalism affects perceptions of legitimacy among local residents and police officers.

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter examines how citizen journalism affects perceptions of legitimacy among local residents and police officers.

Methodology/approach

Qualitative data were collected through semi-structured in-depth interviews with residents and police officers.

Findings

Local residents are mostly willing to obey police commands, but a lack of trust in the police and fear of retaliation hinder willingness to cooperate with the police. Citizens’ willingness to follow police orders is mostly a way for them to end the encounter as quickly as possible so the contact will not extend for a prolonged period of time and cause even more serious consequences. Citizens have recorded the police in the past when they witnessed officers not following proper procedures. The police view citizens recording them as a form of defiance and while this makes policing challenging, police officers interviewed still hold high levels of self-legitimacy, most likely due to their organizational and occupational culture. Recording the police has emerged as a way for citizens to challenge police authority and legitimacy during encounters.

Originality/value

While recording the police has increased with recent technological advances, little empirical research has examined its impact on policing and police-community relations. This study connects three critical issues in policing – technology, citizen journalism, and police legitimacy – by assessing the impact of recording the police on police legitimacy in the eyes of the public and police officers. Not only does this study fill our gap in knowledge on citizens recording the police, but it also furnishes valuable implications for policy and future study.

Details

The Politics of Policing: Between Force and Legitimacy
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-030-5

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Book part

Jordan C. Pickering and David A. Klinger

Drawing from literature on organizations that function efficiently and effectively while maintaining low levels of errors and occupational injuries and deaths, we argue…

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing from literature on organizations that function efficiently and effectively while maintaining low levels of errors and occupational injuries and deaths, we argue that police departments can enhance their legitimacy by adopting the practices found in such organizations because doing so can reduce the frequency of unnecessary force against citizens and lower officer injury rates.

Methodology/approach

To support our argument, we review literatures on the causes and avoidance of errors in organizations, identify how well-run organizations in high-risk environments are able to operate safely, and describe how police departments can adopt similar practices as a mechanism to enhance officer safety and lower the rate at which officers use force against citizens.

Findings

By adopting the practices of successful organizations in other fields, police departments and their officers can promote and enhance their safety while simultaneously reducing their use of force against citizens. By doing so, police can raise the level of legitimacy they hold in the eyes of the American public, which has arguably decreased in the wake of recent events involving police gunfire.

Originality/value

Our ideas contribute to the policing literature by: (1) highlighting a preexisting body of literature and outlining its application to police organizations and (2) detailing how both the police and the public can benefit from improved police practices.

Details

The Politics of Policing: Between Force and Legitimacy
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-030-5

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Book part

Nicole E. Haas

In this study we set out to explain police support for the use of force, police response to a vignette about force, and police self-reported use of force.

Abstract

Purpose

In this study we set out to explain police support for the use of force, police response to a vignette about force, and police self-reported use of force.

Methodology/approach

The computer-assisted survey was conducted among 419 officers of the Metropolitana police department in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Findings

The regression analyses show that a substantial part of how officers view force, and the reported frequency of their own use of force, can be explained through demographic characteristics, organizational features, attitudes toward citizens, and personal experience.

Originality/value

This study was conducted in a region where excessive police use of force is unfortunately a continuing concern. Based on the results we advise police organizations to tackle this issue by investing in improving police attitudes toward both internal and external relations. We also recommend prohibiting officers to carry the regulatory gun while off duty, in order to reduce deaths of both civilians and officers.

Details

The Politics of Policing: Between Force and Legitimacy
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-030-5

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Article

Kate M. Den Houter and Deepshikha Chatterjee

The purpose of this paper is to assess if in viewing tense, potentially stigmatizing, police-civilian interactions, people bring their own gendered and racial biases, as…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess if in viewing tense, potentially stigmatizing, police-civilian interactions, people bring their own gendered and racial biases, as they form perceptions of officers' use of identity management (IM) strategies, as they relate to officers' competence, warmth and appropriateness of actions.

Design/methodology/approach

In two experimental studies, the authors investigate how the IM strategies used by female and racial minority officers impact officers' ratings of competence, warmth and appropriateness of actions. Utilizing a 2x2x4 design, the authors manipulate officer gender (race), civilian gender (race) and IM strategy used by the officer in a news article describing a police-civilian interaction.

Findings

Not all IM strategies established positive perceptions of officers. Gender and race effects were observed in how officers were seen when they were involved in a tense interaction with a civilian. Female officers were perceived as more appropriate in their actions than male officers. However, Black, female officers were rated as both less warm and appropriate in their actions than White, female officers.

Originality/value

Although policing is seen as a tainted profession, officers' use of IM strategies is understudied. By taking a novel lens of stigmatization and IM strategies as they relate to policing, the authors contribute to how officers may manage their identities as they cope with the stigmatized views of their occupation. Findings have implications for the diversification of law enforcement personnel, as well as building trust and legitimacy between officers and the communities they serve.

Details

Policing: An International Journal, vol. 44 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Book part

Maria Haberfeld

Drawing on over two decades of studying and researching police recruitment, selection, and training, a correlation of the three prongs to professional policing in a…

Abstract

Purpose

Drawing on over two decades of studying and researching police recruitment, selection, and training, a correlation of the three prongs to professional policing in a democratic society is established.

Methodology/approach

The author overviews the current approaches to professional policing through an analysis of a statement made by a legendary chief of police August Vollmer, who is credited with the inception of the era of “professional policing.”

Findings

The transition from a young adult and inexperienced adult into a life-and-death decision maker needs to take into consideration a host of characteristics identified by Vollmer. These characteristics cannot be found nor honed within the current recruitment, selection, and training practices of American police departments.

Originality/value

This chapter provides an analysis of the required skills and characteristics necessary to hone and develop a professional police officer in a democratic society.

Details

The Politics of Policing: Between Force and Legitimacy
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-030-5

Keywords

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