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Date of Graduation
Due to many highly publicized instances of excessive use of force by the police, namely those associated with George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, law enforcement agencies have recently come under much public watch and criticism. Although anti-police movements have existed since long ago, there has been a new wind of them since these events. This backlash and outrage that have come as a result from these instances of police excessive use of force have led to many changes within police departments across the country, which has likely had far-reaching effects on police officers. Through the use of an online, anonymous survey given to police officers at departments in the Midwest, this study therefore examined the self-reported impact of the recent anti-police movements on officers’ satisfaction, stress, perceived hostility from the public, and their overall thoughts on their career paths. It additionally focused on how their rank, years of experience, and department may have played a role in this impact. Findings from this research provide support for the statement that police officers have, in fact, been affected by the recent anti-police movements and protests. Not only did their overall attitudes change, but so did their satisfaction, stress, and perceptions on hostility from community members. The attitudes of law enforcement officials became more negative for the most part since these movements and protests while their job satisfaction decreased. Most reported an increase in stress as well as a heightened perception of hostility from the public towards them. Sergeants and those with lower to middle amounts of years of experience reported these thoughts more than those of a different rank or with more years of experience. Despite these consequences, though, they were not severe enough to lead the majority of officers to think about leaving their jobs. The implications from this research show that police officers face new issues and sources of stress on the job due to the recent onset of anti-police movements and protests and that new solutions must be created in order to accommodate for them.
Peisker, Julia, "Anti-Police Movement Survey" (2021). Honors Theses. 3424.
Honors Thesis-Open Access