The police and the representatives of the general public interact rather often, but their relations tend to differ greatly depending on the situation. Some people tend to have rather positive attitudes towards these professionals because they consider them to be the main force of protection. Others believe that the police do not operate well and underlines the fact that it is not able to fulfill its main goals and satisfy the needs of the population. Another group of people treats the police as enemies because they represent opposite sides. As a rule, people’s considerations depend on their personal experience, so they are extremely biased.
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In order to become a police officer, a person should be honest, motivated, self-asserted, emotionally stable, just, intelligent, and have good communicational skills. It is generally believed that such a person will be able to avoid those issues that are faced by the police, including:
- Discretion. Some officers tend to get too involved in the case they are dealing with that they start judging people not on the basis of rules and evidence but focusing on their personal beliefs and judgment. Rather often such behavior is affected by the nature of the committed crime, the personality of the victim and suspect/offender, socioeconomic status, and race/ethnicity, etc.
- Job stress. Police officers are involved in various events that affect their emotions and mental health. They experience high levels of stress because of the things they see every day. Thus, it is vital for them to resort to stress management, including proper nutrition and regular physical exercises. In addition to that, it will be rather advantageous if they receive more free hours to get in an appropriate condition or even consult a professional.
- Corruption. Unfortunately, some police officers get involved in illegal activities and become criminals themselves. Some of them just agree to take some small amounts of money or accept favors offered by people they interact with while others seek for opportunities to make money from people. However, high moral standards, discipline, and law enforcement can help the government to take this issue under control.
- Excessive force. Some officers use too much force towards criminals, which is both unethical and illegal. As a result, they can face legal issues and citizens’ resentment.
- Professionalizing law enforcement. Professional accreditation may be needed for the police to prove their skills. However, people should realize that some mistakes can be made unintentionally and can be forgiven while others should not be tolerated and require legal investigation.
To ensure that police officers act ethically, it is critical to maintaining a particular hiring procedure. They all should be well-educated people who have been taught how to make ethical decisions in different situations. They should not waste time thinking how to act in case of emergency and need to think of the happiness of the majority but not of the personal profit. Unethical behaviors, in which some officers can be engaged, should be controlled and appropriate punishment provided so that they do not repeat. Fortunately, Americans tend to be satisfied with the police and their work. Applicants are thoroughly selected and accomplish different tests to prove that they can become police officers. To avoid the main issues faced by the police, it is critical to resort to stress management and organizational change. Still, there is always room for improvement, and other approaches can be considered.