Stress and Stress Management in the Police Force

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Police officers are exposed to a lot of stress in their line of duty which emanates from the systems that the department uses to bring down crimes within the society. These systems are likely to result in bitterness that might affect the department’s capability to ensure that safety is uphold within the city or town (Smith 3). Thus, cops feel a lot of stress during their work which is caused by the nature of the duties they are tasked with. For instance, it is reported that the number of police officers at the NYPD are 6,000 less than their number in 2001 (Smith 5).

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Despite the decreased number of cops, the intensity of work remains the same and at some instances is increasing which prompt the cops to work overtime thus exposing them to work related stress. Also, shifts and duties are done by the few number of police officers thus officers will be forced to shift from one duty to another such as conducting an investigation at filling papers in the department. This results in a lot of stress due to strain by the officers. Financial constraints experienced by the officers is another cause of stress. Cops work extra harder to earn 37,000 USD annually which does not fully settles their bills since they have families to provide for (Smith 13). This prompts cops at some point to work in multiple jobs to raise enough money for their families.

Therefore, combining this with the stress they fell as a cop worsens their situation. The top-down micromanaging style that is used in fighting against crime is reported to depress the morale of law enforcement officers thus resulting to stress (Smith 5). Another cause of stress on police officers is the issues with numbers where officers are required to file reports regarding the number of criminals or individuals they pursue while on duty. This, instills an intuition that they are expected to report numbers rather than enforcing the law thus employing stop and frisk technique on anyone without solid evidences. This creates enmity against the cops and hostility from the public which makes it harder for the police officers to conduct patrols and fight crime as well as stressing.

For instance, there are a lot of stop and frisk at CompStat where police officers are trying to get to report numbers rather than enforcing the law (Smith 10). The hostility that the cops encounter from the public due to the anti-cop perceptions puts them on a lot of risks for instance cops could be shot or even assaulted. Cameroon who was a devoted police officer was assaulted numerous times by the public and his fellow police officers mistreated him for making average of eight arrests per month due to the fight for numbers. The department did not act to help him in any way which prompted him to reign from the police force because of the stress he felt from the work externally and internally.

Police officers are also accused of collaborating with criminals such as drug dealers and as a result they are investigated which causes a lot of stress on them since they tend to feel doubted and watched. Police officers can register to law enforcement stress programs where they can be counseled and supported to reduce the stress as well as sign up with psychiatrists. They can collaborate to air their grievances as a group since voicing them as an individual will prompt np immediate action nor will it display a matter of seriousness. They should advocate to removal of heads of department who are not willing to help them or even take actions against police assaults.

Stresses related to the number of officers should be addressed by increasing the number of new recruits in academies with an encouragement with a promise of a higher pay. Also, the issues with numbers can be abolished to ensure that police officers are motivated by the interest to serve the public and not to satisfy the expectation of the heads of department.

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Stress and Stress Management in the Police Force. (2022, Oct 03). Retrieved January 29, 2023 , from
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