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Walker-8-chapter-6

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  • 1. Police in America Chapter Six Police Officers II: On the Job McGraw-Hill © 2013 McGraw-Hill Companies. All Rights Reserved.
  • 2. Reality Shock: Beginning Police Work  The astonishment a new police officer experiences during the first weeks and months on the job when encountering the unpleasant aspects of dealing with the public, the criminal justice system, and the department 6-2
  • 3. Reality Shock  Encountering Citizens  Hostility  Encountering the Criminal Justice System  Police officers as “insiders”  See the reality of the system  Encountering the Department  “Department Politics” 6-3
  • 4. Initial Assignment  Impact of the Seniority System  Officers with more experience have first priority in requesting assignments  Eliminates favoritism and discrimination  But, least experienced officers get the most difficult assignments • Leads to the younger officers being better qualified and trained than older officers 6-4
  • 5. The Idea of a Unique Police Subculture   A particular set of values, beliefs, and acceptable forms of behavior characteristic of American police Original Concept  Group solidarity  Secrecy  “Code of silence”  The Capacity to Use Force  No other occupation has power to take away liberty through force  Danger: Potential versus Actual  Police work has become safer in the last 20 years  Conflicting demands: Law versus Order  Pressure to bend or evade the rules to get evidence or confessions 6-5
  • 6. Code of Silence  Also known as the “blue curtain,” a code of honor among police officers whereby officers refuse to testify against corrupt colleagues, creating a veil of secrecy around police actions.  Secrecy: In this context, it is the attitude displayed by police officers to the rest of the world. Police officers keep secret the misbehaviors of other police officers. 6-6
  • 7. New Perspective on the Police Subculture   “Police officers are far less unified today and far less likely to have an us-them view of civilians” Herbert’s Dimensions of Police Subculture       The law Bureaucratic control Culture of “adventure/machismo” Safety Competence Morality 6-7
  • 8. The Changing Rank and File  Women  African Americans  Hispanics  Gay & Lesbian Officers  Intersection of Gender, Race, Ethnicity, and Sexual Identity  Levels of Education 6-8
  • 9. Changing Rank and File: The Impact of Women Police Officers   Breaking up the traditional solidarity of the work group Attitude of men toward women officers varied  Traditionals  Moderns  Moderates  Percentage of women among sworn officers remains around 12%  “Glass ceiling” at entry level and in terms of promotion     Style of work the same as men Receive fewer citizen complaints Less likely to use force Sexism and sexual harassment still an issue 6-9
  • 10. African-American Police  Different attitudes on police use of excessive force  More likely to support citizen oversight  More likely to support community policing  More likely to live in area where they work  Do not perform differently from white officers 6-10
  • 11. Hispanic/Latino Officers  Increasing significantly in recent years  Dual identities: both police officers and members of Hispanic community  In some departments, they are the majority  Minority Hispanic police officers believe they are discriminated against in salary and promotions 6-11
  • 12. Gay and Lesbian Officers  Gay Officer Action League (GOAL) of NYC  By 1992, at least 10 depts. openly recruited gay and lesbian officers  Choose law enforcement for the same reasons people have traditionally chosen it  Many experience discrimination on the job  Homophobic talk by other officers  Barriers in assignment 6-12
  • 13. The Intersection of Gender, Race, Ethnicity, and Sexual Identity    Relationships among officers of different races, genders and ethnicities are extremely complex Tension and conflict among different gender/race/ethnic groups Pattern of self-segregation  Limited interaction between officers of different races/genders  “There is no credible evidence that officers of different racial or ethnic backgrounds perform differently during interactions with citizens simply because of race or ethnicity” – National Academy of Sciences 6-13
  • 14. Levels of Education  Education level of officers has been rising  Education generation gap between younger, better-educated officers and veteran officers with less education  No strong evidence that higher education leads to better performance on the street McGraw-Hill 6-14
  • 15. Cohort Effects and Organizational Effects on Performance  Cohort Effects  Officers hired in one decade will have different ideas and lifestyles than officers hired in later decades  Old street cop culture vs. new bureaucratic style  Organizational Effects  The informal culture of a police organization affects officer attitudes toward certain important subjects  Ex: Community Policing 6-15
  • 16. The Relationship Between Attitudes and Behavior  Several factors mediate the effect of attitudes on behavior:  Police officers are constrained by police bureaucracy and the criminal justice system  Possibility of citizen complaint or lawsuit  Supervisors advice against prejudicial statements that are contrary to the values of the department 6-16
  • 17. Styles of Police Work  Active officers     Initiate more contacts with citizens Back up officers on other calls Assert control of situations Make more arrests  Passive officers  Initiate few contacts with citizens  Respond only to calls to which they are dispatched  Make few traffic stops/ field interrogations / arrests 6-17
  • 18. Moving Through Police Careers  Salaries and Benefits     Fringe benefits Job security Salary increase through promotion 68% of all municipal depts. offer incentive pay for college education  In-Service Training    Pre-service academy training Field training program Regular in-service training 6-18
  • 19. Career Development    Promotion  Severely limited  Irregular intervals  Formal testing Salaries and benefits  Attractive  Good benefits Assignments to special units  Discretion of chief and seniority constraints    Lateral entry  The opportunity to move to other police departments is very limited. Coveted assignments  More challenging  May lead to promotion Outside Employment  Supplement incomes 6-19
  • 20. Performance Evaluations  Definitions not clear  Halo effect  Rating of all officers tend to cluster around one numerical level  Tendency to rate everyone highly 6-20
  • 21. Job Satisfaction and Job Stress  Job Satisfaction in policing falls into 5 Categories  Nature of police work  Organizational factors such as perceived support from leaders, relations with fellow officers, and opportunities for career advancement  Relations with the community  Relations with the media and the political establishment  Personal or family factors that influence a person’s job  Sources of Job Stress      Threat of danger Citizen disrespect and challenge to police authority Police department itself For female officers, sexual harassment and sexism Coping with Job Stress: many departments have programs to help officers cope with stress and other personal problems 6-21
  • 22. The Rights of Police Officers  Same constitutional and civil rights as other citizens  Protected by first amendment to belong to unpopular religious or political groups  Police Officer’s Bill of Rights  Protects officers under investigation for alleged misconduct  Turnover or attrition: leaving police work 6-22