8 tips to be prepared for life in the fishbowl

If you’ve worked in law enforcement for longer than a day, you’ve heard someone say, “I remember when we used to could...” and you fill in the blank. As the years go on the lists of “we used to could do’s” gets longer. Given the current state of events surrounding our profession we need to realize that the instead of teaching new officers all the “we used to could do’s” we need to prepare them for life in the fishbowl. 

Our patrol cars are equipped with GPS units that can tell how fast we are driving, if our headlights are activated, if we are wearing our seatbelt, and if we are turning corners to fast. Our squad cameras are recording all the time as most of the new cameras record up to 60 seconds prior to being activated. Everyone has a smartphone with a camera — and they’re ready and waiting to film “police action.”

Most of us expect to relinquish some degree of privacy while driving in our squad car or interacting with members of the public but as a profession we have not prepared ourselves for life in the fishbowl.

All you have to do is read the newspaper or watch the news from time to time and you will read about members of our profession who were unprepared for life in the fishbowl. Police officers have been disciplined for Facebook posts, posts on local newspaper websites, and sending inappropriate text messages while at work

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