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Pulse of Policing: PoliceOne's report on the state of law enforcement in 2015

We at PoliceOne have gathered our resources and set about a comprehensive examination of the health of our industry, focusing on agencies, individuals, and private sector police enterprises


We at PoliceOne have observed a number of current trends which have had an effect on the health of the profession of law enforcement as a whole and on individual police officers across the country. Police officers in many places perceive that they are the focus of an increasing level of vehemently negative attention from the public, the press, and politicians. The level of esteem held by citizens for the cops who serve and protect them seems to have withered in many quarters, leaving a negative impact on officer morale, and on agencies’ effectiveness in fighting crime. 

On top of a weakening morale, there’s the issue of physical and mental health — we are still losing too many cops to heart attacks. And despite increased awareness of the effects of PTSI and the emergence of peer support groups and professional psychological services to address the issue, too many cops are suffering in silence — with some even taking their own lives.

The level of esteem held by citizens for the cops who serve and protect them seems to have withered in many quarters, leaving a negative impact on officer morale, and on agencies’ effectiveness in fighting crime. (AP Image)
The level of esteem held by citizens for the cops who serve and protect them seems to have withered in many quarters, leaving a negative impact on officer morale, and on agencies’ effectiveness in fighting crime. (AP Image)

If these ailments weren’t enough, the level of budgetary support for law enforcement efforts has been either frozen or reduced in agencies across the nation. Severely strained for infrastructure investment and stretched thin with fewer rank-and-file cops, agencies are being forced in many cases to do more with less, even as citizen complaints and criticism grows. There have been a number of efforts in the private sector which have begun to address those matters, but we must understand what more can be done. 

Addressing the Issues
All of these issues and challenges have impacted everyone in law enforcement, from the patrol cop to the command staff — some have even affected the vendors and service-provides who serve our police agencies. As a consequence of these observations, we at PoliceOne have launched Pulse of Policing: Law Enforcement in 2015, an ongoing research venture aimed at examining the current state of policing from all angles. 

We’ve gathered our resources and set about a comprehensive examination of the health of our industry, focusing on agencies, individuals, and private-sector police enterprises. 

In this series of articles, we will bring you first person perspectives of individuals as well as roundtable discussions and case studies that ask and aim to answer questions such as:

 What are the most common, wide-spread problem areas for agencies? What has caused the shift in public support, weakened community relations, and strained race relations? What can be done about it? Can we put programs in place to ensure officers of different ethnic and minority backgrounds can be successfully recruited and retained at the department?

Are PTSI and heart health — silent killers continually taking officers’ lives and yet two of the least-discussed physical and mental afflictions officers face —affecting individuals more today than ever before? How can we raise awareness and lower the number of these preventable problems? 

Has the current negative public perception on ‘police militarization’ impacted businesses that produce tactical products? What problems are being solved — and how — by vendors and service-providers in the cloud technology industry right now? What technologies and products are on the horizon? 

A Results-Driven Enterprise
Our aim is to identify problem areas in all aspects of law enforcement, and uncover  suggestions for remediation. Where we see core areas of strength, we’ll cast a spotlight so others can learn and adapt those successes. We hope that the Pulse of Policing will provide positive case studies which can serve as inspiration — even a template for success — for agencies facing similar situations. 

In the coming weeks and months, we’ll feature articles addressing these topics and others, so watch for regular installments in this series in our newsletters and on our homepage, and visit this special coverage page

We appreciate your feedback and your ideas, so let us know what you think of the coverage and what else you’d like to know about, by sending us an email

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