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NCJ Number: 68527 Find in a Library
Title: LEVEL OF INFORMATION AND KNOWLEDGE OF THE INHABITANTS OF NORTH RHINE-WESTPHALIA (WEST GERMANY) REGARDING THE POLICE AND THEIR JOB
Journal: SCHRIFTENREIHE DER POLIZEI-FUHRUNGSAKADEMIE  Issue:1  Dated:(1980)  Pages:66-89
Author(s): E A NAETHER
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 24
Format: Article
Language: German
Country: West Germany (Former)
Annotation: THE RESULTS OF A PUBLIC INFORMATION CAMPAIGN BY POLICE IN NORTH RHINE-WESTPHALIA ARE EVALUATED TO ASCERTAIN LEVELS OF PUBLIC KNOWLEDGE ABOUT THE POLICE AND PUBLIC ATTITUDES TOWARD POLICE WORK.
Abstract: THE PUBLIC INFORMATION CAMPAIGN INVOLVED DISTRIBUTION OF PAMPHLETS AND MULTIVISUAL EXHIBITS. THIS EXAMINATION OF PUBLIC ATTITUDES TOWARD THE POLICE, USING A REPRESENTATIVE SAMPLE OF 1012 CITIZENS, WAS MADE TO IDENTIFY GOALS FOR FUTURE PUBLIC RELATIONS EFFORTS. IN GENERAL, THE POLICE HAVE TRADITIONALLY BEEN REPRESENTATIVES OF STATE AUTHORITY AND AT THE SAME TIME FATHER FIGURES WHO DETERMINE WHETHER CITIZENS' BEHAVIOR IS 'GOOD' OR 'BAD.' THE PUBLIC TENDS TO TAKE AN AMBIVALENT STANCE TOWARD THE POLARITIES OF POLICE FUNCTION, I.E., ASSISTANCE AND PROTECTION VERSUS SURVEILLANCE AND RESTRICTION OF PERSONAL FREEDOM. THE AMBIVALENCE IS FED BY STATE AND CITIZEN CONFLICT OF INTEREST AND BY THE ASSISTANCE-SURVEILLANCE ROLE CONFLICT WITHIN OFFICERS THEMSELVES. FINDINGS INDICATE THAT PUBLIC TRUST OF POLICE IS ONLY AVERAGE, THAT ESPECIALLY YOUNG PEOPLE, MALES, AND THE BETTER-EDUCATED ARE CRITICAL OF THE POLICE AND THAT YOUNG MEN BETWEEN 14 AND 29 REJECT THE POLICE PROFESSION FOR THEMSELVES BECAUSE OF SUBORDINATION, RISK, UNIFORMITY, AND IRREGULAR HOURS. PUBLIC KNOWLEDGE OF POLICE DUTIES IS REALISTIC, BUT PREREQUISITES FOR THE PROFESSION ARE NOT WIDELY KNOWN. THE MAIN SOURCE OF INFORMATION ABOUT THE POLICE ARE THE MEDIA (INFORMATION PAMPHLETS IN ONLY 4 PERCENT OF THE CASES). THE LOCAL STATION HOUSE IS CONSIDERED THE MOST IMPORTANT COMMUNITY CONTACT POINT WITH POLICE; POLICE PATROLS AND COMMISSIONERS ARE THE BEST-KNOWN POLICE FUNCTIONARIES. MOST CITIZENS REGARD THEMSELVES AS UNDERINFORMED ABOUT POLICE WORK AND DESIRE MORE INFORMATION, ESPECIALLY ABOUT SPECIALIZED WORK AREAS, RECENT CHANGES IN POLICE FUNCTIONS, CRIME CONTROL AND PREVENTION, CAREER POSSIBILITIES, POLICE SAFETY MEASURES, AND TERRORIST CONTROL MEASURES. HALF THE SURVEYED PERSONS RECALL CONTACT WITH SOME FORM OF POLICE PUBLIC RELATIONS WORK, USUALLY THROUGH TELEVISION. DISSEMINATED POLICE INFORMATION IS REVIEWED POSITIVELY BY THE PUBLIC, WHICH FAVORS FURTHER PUBLIC RELATIONS CAMPAIGNS. EXTENSIVE TABULAR MATERIAL IS FURNISHED. --IN GERMAN.
Index Term(s): Attitudes toward authority; Germany; Media support; Police community relations; Public Attitudes/Opinion; Public education; Public relations programs
Note: RECORD OF A LECTURE MADE AT THE GERMAN POLICE ACADEMY
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=68527

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