Although there's not a lot of turnover in most departments, choice positions may come up as the baby boomer generation retires. Police officers, after all, are public servants, and public service is largely about sacrifice. The job benefits of being a police officer are quite valuable in many communities – and we’re not talking about the free coffee that local businesses might offer. Most people who have a lot of police experience say that they've been attacked with knives and gotten shot at on numerous occasions, gone to the ER about once a year and lost several friends on the job. You get to work tough areas with violent people.. According to the International Journal of Emergency Mental Health, police are at a much greater risk than the general population for developing PTSD symptoms, including sleep disturbances, anxiety and hyperarousal, and alcohol abuse. As a result many officers injure themselves to the point of being unable to work in law enforcement any longer. 2. Professionalism is recognized and highly regarded in law enforcement. Officers are also exposed to extreme temperatures for extended periods of time. Working alone. PTSD is an occupational hazard and another con of being a police officer. 3. Most departments don’t experience a lot of turnover, but it is possible to become enrolled in police academies or training institutes to prepare for this career option. Many police officers have the option to retire early. Add that to the constant exposure to the negative elements of humanity, and you’ll find many officers dealing with stress every day. They volunteer to make a difference, speak to scouting groups, make school presentations, and create a community which everyone can take pride in each day. The BLS projects that 46,038 new police officer jobs will be added between 2016 and 2026, representing a 7 percent increase in the force. A video I put together about the dangers of being a police officer. More often, long dull hours are spent patrolling bucolic neighborhoods and ticketing stop sign violators. Opportunities will be best for those who have military experience, a bachelor’s degree in law enforcement and fluency in more than one language. There are also great rewards because this job helps a community stay safe as no other position can. Among the Even if you don’t have a college degree, the average pay for a police officer in the U.S. is over $62,000. You can find many appealing reasons for becoming a police officer, including fighting crime, enforcing laws, catching bad guys and the adrenalin rush of a late night shift. Many people look up to the police, especially young kids. Shootings, dead bodies, abused children and fatal accidents are among the tragedies they face. In California, if you have a minimum of 5 years of service on the job, then you are eligible to retire to collect a partial pension at age 50. They see this conflict on an almost daily basis, then are asked to write you a speeding ticket if you break the law. You can find many appealing reasons for becoming a police officer, including fighting crime, enforcing laws, catching bad guys and the adrenalin rush of a … 4. Often, that sacrifice starts with your wallet. One officer is killed in the line of duty every 63 hours, according to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. Being a police officer is a very respectable thing. After gaining experience as a patrol officer, you may be tapped for positions of increasing responsibility, such as lieutenant, commander, captain, sergeant, detective, police chief or public safety director, depending on the ranks and titles within your department. By definition, decisions involve uncertainty, ie, the likelihood and impact of possible outcomes cannot be totally predicted, and no particular outcome can be guaranteed. That might be through performance standards, talent application, or skill-based activities. The point is, for cops, the things we complain about most are things that drew us to the job in the first place. Officers generally disdain reports, along with the reams of paperwork that must be completed and the bean counting of every little incident handled. 9. Others are not that lucky. 1. Police / law enforcement officers run a high risk of being attacked, wounded or even killed by criminals, hoodlums and other people whose behavior disagrees with the law and the society norms. Even when an officer breaks the law, most are still compassionate, caring, and smart individuals who want to make a positive impact on their community. It is a profession that is always under much scrutiny. Although the statistics are fuzzy, clinically treated alcohol addiction rates are usually calculated to be about twice as high for police officers than for the general population … From a law enforcement standpoint, look for the helpers. The International Association of Chiefs of Police annually confers prestigious awards to individuals for valor and distinguished service in community policing, victim advocacy, crime prevention and terrorism prevention, for instance. You will be seen as a pillar of the community, and someone whom people can trust. According to information released by the Pew Research Center, over 50% of police officers in the United States describe their job as being “frustrating.” Another term is used there as well: “unfulfilling.” That is almost double the national average in the United States for people who are discontent with their jobs. § 1983 are considered to be the most common filed against police officers as they can be filed against any officer who has been accused of violating a person’s statutory or constitutional rights as described by law. Awards are conveyed at the local, state, national, and global levels when you do exemplary work. 1. Police officers get to shape their communities. However, most people in the community are not aware of the extent of that risk. Officers killed in the line of duty often leave behind a grieving partner and young children. If you got started in your career at age 21, then you could potentially retire in your 40s and pursue something else you love without worrying about a paycheck. Police officers are not the most highly paid individuals, so the stress of making a living on a cop's salary is another addition to the stress meter. You never know where dispatch is going to send you or what to expect when you get there. The diversity of the work available to a police officer is extremely dynamic. The Pew Research Center reports that over half of all police officers describe their job as frustrating and unfulfilling, which compares to 29 percent of workers in other occupations who feel that same level of discontent with their profession. In Ancient China, for example, the enforcement of laws was carried out by people who were called “prefects.” This structure was maintained in the region for thousands of years, with “sub-prefects” helping to enforce laws at the local level. The Job Is Not for Everyone . No two days are exactly the same in this line of work. PTSD is a common issue found in the world of law enforcement. Some police officers have made it through their entire career without needing to pull their service weapon. 44 of those officers were shot and killed. There is great comfort in knowing that if the worst-case scenario happens, there will be shoulders for you to lean on to help you make it through. You may see violent acts, things that shock you, deceased victims, fatal accidents, and horrendous things that go far beyond what the average person is exposed to each day. Although times are changing in TV shows and movies, police officers are often portrayed as people who eat a lot of doughnuts, like to thump heads, and tend to have the intelligence comparable to a rhesus monkey. Lawsuits filed under 42 U.S.C. Alcoholism is considered another aberrant statistic for police officers. Helping students succeed has been her passion while serving in many areas of student affairs and adjunct teaching. List of Cons of Being a Police Officer. You get to change tires for the elderly. Many people feel like their work goes unrecognized every day. Those figures were about 10% lower than the year before, and the second-lowest total in 50 years, but it is still far too many lives lost to protect communities from violence and crime. Morale can suffer when officers are exhausted from overtime. Many jurisdictions offer their officers a free gym membership to help them stay fit. Pre-Service Correctional Officer Training, The Qualifications to Become a K-9 Unit Officer, National Law Enforcment Officers Memorial Fund: Law Enforcement Facts, Pew Research Center: Police Views, Public Views, International Association of Chiefs of Police: Law Enforcement Leadership Awards, National Conference of State Legislatures: Public Safety Workers Retirement Plans, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: OES: Police and Sheriff's Patrol Officers, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Injuries, Illnesses, and Fatalities, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: News Release, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: OOH: Police and Detective, Obligations & Job Duties of Police Officers, Effect on Personal Lives of Being a Police Officer. Expect when you work in this line of duty often leave behind a partner... Talent application, or skill-based activities students at a personal level every day are often the,... 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