The Career of a Police Officer

The Career of a Police Officer
With many people going to school to become police officers it is important to know exactly what the job is about and the effects it has on a person. Many people think it is just sitting in your car and giving speeding tickets. In fact there are many life threatening things that occur while a person is on the job many of which can cause a severe amount of stress. Stress on the job can cause a person to become severely depressed and cause ones home life to fall to pieces.
It is important for anyone interested to find out all the details of law enforcement before jumping into it and getting a career. This study is dealing with police stress will be a good source for anyone looking to get into the law enforcement to see what the mental stresses are, and not just the physical ones. In providing a study on the stresses that police officers go through and the potential dangers it has on that person. This study may deter many people who want to become police officers because they feel that becoming a police officer is a very easy job with no physical or mental stresses, and by reading something like this doing so may even save someone?s life. There are many things that stress can lead to one is suicide even a police officer killing another person because he or she is too stressed out about the situation. Also in this paper we will see what departments are doing to deal with this very common problem that effects many police officers today.
According to Police Stress, Time on the Job, and Strain. Stress was defined as ?the feeling of being faced with demands that could not be met?. Strain was defined as ?the negative mental, behavioral, and physical outcomes of stress.? This paper will discuss a few of the stressors that police officers deal with every day. In this article police officers were paid to fill out a questionnaire and to have their blood pressure taken to see if long-term employment as a police officer reduced stress. The article concluded that it did.
The only catch of this was that as time went on, and the officer was employed for a long period of time the duties changed. From being out on patrol and dealing with the community on a day to day basis to only dealing with the community once or twice a week.
?Every year, hundreds of officers experience intense, traumatic events that can have serious long term consequences for them, their families, and their departments. It is incumbent upon police administrators to ensure that their officers and their departments have the tools at hand to cope with such critical incidents.?(Arthur W. Kureczka). This shows that not only does stress effect a single officer but also an officer?s stress effects his or her family and his or her department. This article gives a few methods on how to deal with stress. One for example was peer support. Peer support is having a trained member of sworn officers to talk to an officer in trouble and to refer him or her to a professional. Without this an officer may not seek help on his own for fear of other officers not thinking that he or she is capable of doing their job.
A study in the Journal of Occupational and organizational psychology in which 39 officers replied to a survey sent out to 100 officers. Of the 39 officers that replied 37 of them were male and 2 of them were female. The survey was meant to ascertain the intensity the police officers had experienced each stressor. The survey asked the police officer to put in order from the most stressful to the least stressful a series of situations. A few of the situations were ?arresting a violent person, facing an unpredictable situation, and facing a situation with the possibility of physical injury?(Journal of Occupational and organizational psychology). The results of the survey concluded that facing an unpredictable situation was the question that got the highest rating to be a stressor among police officers. This article relates to the topic of this paper by showing some of the common situations that police officers deal with.
Police officers deal with more stress than average citizens on a regular basis.

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