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NCJ Number: 135529 Find in a Library
Title: Are Women Better Cops?
Journal: Time  Volume:139  Issue:7  Dated:(February 17, 1992)  Pages:70-72
Author(s): J McDowell
Date Published: 1992
Page Count: 3
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: In some ways, women are better police officers than men; being cool, calm, and communicative, they can help stop violence before it erupts.
Abstract: While women constitute only 9 percent of the nation's 523,262 police officers, they are bringing a distinctly different and valuable set of skills to the profession and are changing the way police officers are perceived in the community. As the police job description expands beyond crime fighting into community service, the growing presence of women may help the tarnished image of police officers, improve community relations, and foster a more flexible and less violent approach to keeping the peace. Intellectual and communicative skills of women take on more importance in police departments that have come under fire for the brutal treatment of suspects in their custody. Policing experts indicate that verbal skills of women often have a calming effect that defuses potentially explosive situations. Such a measured style is especially effective in handling rape and domestic violence calls in which the victims are usually women. Despite the research, the idea of female and male policing styles is controversial. One expert argues that individual temperment is more important than gender in the way police officers perform. Further, some females have qualms about highlighting gender-based differences in police work, especially women who have struggled for years to achieve equity in mostly male departments. Yet, the harassment that persists in many departments encourages female police officers to blend in and be "one of the boys." Resistance to female police stems in part from the fact that they are still relative newcomers to the beat. The movement of many police departments away from traditional law enforcement to a community-oriented role is discussed.
Main Term(s): Male female police performance comparisons; Police women
Index Term(s): Community policing; Male/female police officer relations
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