Stress on Police Officers Essay

Words: 1365
Pages: 6

Not much good news here.

The following is the text of a speech give by Dan Goldfarb to a group of union delegates on the impact stress can have on their men.

There has been a lot of research on the negative effects of stress on people in general. I am sure you know that police work is one of the top rated professions for job stress next to air traffic controllers and dentists. A good way to start this presentation, I think, is to give a good working definition of police stress I have seen the following definition around enough to realize that many who are reading this are already familiar with this excellent definition. What I like about the following definition is that it is not just
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3. Depression. 4. A failure to get help. (Most officers who commit suicide have no history of having sought counseling).

All four factors are symptoms that can stem from an officer's stress levels. Police suicide is more directly related to relationship problems than to job stress! Of the last 14 suicides among the police officers in New York City, 12, or 86%, had to due with divorce or relationship breakup.
Police officers going through a divorce are 5 times more likely to commit suicide that and officer in a stable marriage! Relationship problems, however, are highly related to job stress. The circle is complete!
If we consider that officers have an important relationship with their department, we can examine the effect of that relationship gone bad. Officers who get in serious trouble on the job, suspended or facing termination, are 7 times more likely to commit suicide. (Apparently cops like their jobs better than their wives).
So we see that stress has a profound effect on police officers lives, especially their home lives. Studies have called police work a "high risk lifestyle". Not high risk in terms of the physical dangers of the job, but a high risk in terms of developing attitudinal problems, behavioral problems, and intimacy and relationship problems. So you learn something about the effects of police work. You learn if you ask the average cop "Hey, what's been the scariest experience during your police career?" They will answer "My first