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NCJ Number: 220857 
Title: Police Organization and Suicide (From Under the Blue Shadow: Clinical and Behavioral Perspectives on Police Suicide, P 119-133, 2007, John M. Violanti and Stephanie Samuels -- See NCJ-220852)
Author(s): Stephanie Samuels
Date Published: 2007
Page Count: 15
Sponsoring Agency: Charles C. Thomas
Springfield, IL 62704
Sale Source: Charles C. Thomas
2600 South First Street
Springfield, IL 62704
United States of America
Type: Case Study; Issue Overview
Format: Book Chapter
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: After discussing the importance of police organizational support in preventing suicide among officers who are attempting to cope with stress and despair, this chapter proposes the features of such support.
Abstract: Police organizations should collect and regularly analyze information that can assist in monitoring the psychological well-being of officers who have been involved in critical incidents both on and off duty. Some signs of maladjustment are increased sick leave, increased risk-taking, and reduction in job performance. Departments should also monitor their officers when off-the-job problems occur, such as a sick family member, a death in the family, child-related issues, and drug or alcohol abuse. When signs of maladjustment are detected, there should be a plan for mandatory debriefing by a licensed professional outside police facilities. Any signs of mental disorder should trigger the requirement that an officer release possession of his/her gun to the department, to be returned only after on officer has been cleared to return to his/her regular duties. All evaluations for return to work should be done by an outside person who has not been treating the officer for psychological injury. After return to work, the officer should be allowed to continue counseling on departmental time. Recruits should receive training in the recognition of PTSD, compassion fatigue, depression, and suicide, as well as appropriate coping mechanisms and stress management. 2 references
Main Term(s): Police suicide
Index Term(s): Employee assistance programs; Employer-employee relations; Mental health services; Police agencies; Social conditions
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