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NCJ Number: 200728 Find in a Library
Title: Emotional Intelligence and How It Contributes to Officer Safety
Journal: Corrections Today  Volume:65  Issue:3  Dated:June 2003  Pages:84,86
Author(s): Leonard Manzella; Bruce West
Date Published: June 2003
Page Count: 2
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article discusses methods for police officers to develop and maintain a decisionmaking process that is emotionally intelligent to promote personal safety.
Abstract: The key components of emotional intelligence are self-awareness and empathy. These qualities are not only the foundation of emotional intelligence but are essential for sound moral development and social responsibility. Self-awareness is the understanding of one’s emotions or motives and beliefs, as well as strengths and limitations. Empathy is the ability to understand and share others’ feelings. Cognitive or intellectual empathy is the ability to predict others’ thoughts and feelings. These two components of emotional intelligence are processed in separate areas of the brain. Most officers intuitively understand the differences between cognition and emotion. Since offenders cannot be expected to possess high levels of self-awareness or empathy, it is especially important that officers either come to the job with those characteristics or that they are trained to acquire them. Current research indicates that emotional intelligence can be learned. Emotional intelligence is a critical attribute for virtually all levels of criminal justice professionals. Self-awareness and empathy can be learned and applied through psycho-dramatic role training. Officers with emotional intelligence will be much better equipped to successfully confront the challenges of their assignments when responding to demanding individuals and situations. As a result, they will create fewer incidents, provide a higher level of safety, and reduce the risk of liability. 3 references
Main Term(s): Police safety; Role perception
Index Term(s): Behavior patterns; Interpersonal relations; Occupational safety and health; Police effectiveness; Police safety techniques; Role playing
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