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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 90016 Find in a Library
Title: Preliminary Examination of the Factors Related to Turnover of Women in Law Enforcement
Journal: Journal of Police Science and Administration  Volume:11  Issue:2  Dated:(June 1983)  Pages:149-155
Author(s): L J Fry
Date Published: 1983
Page Count: 7
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examines the reasons women officers gave for leaving a county sheriff's department, and it draws policy implications for the retention of women officers.
Abstract: This study examined the officer turnover rate from fiscal 1971-72 to fiscal 1979-80 (n=334). The following information on each person was collected from the records search: (1) date of termination, (2) rank at termination, (3) date of rank, (4) years of departmental service, (5) years of law enforcement experience, (6) last departmental assignment, (7) reasons given for termination, (8) age, (9) education, and (10) sex. There were some distinct differences between the situations of the women and men who left the department. A total of 93.1 percent of the women were deputies when they terminated, compared to 78.2 percent of the men. Further, only 6.9 percent of the women left from patrol assignments, compared to 43.7 percent of the men. A total of 71.4 percent of the women had final assignments in the custody division (the women's jail). Women also accounted for 15.5 percent of all those who left the agency for work in other law enforcement departments. Whether the women moved from the area to another department because of their husbands' change in employment is not known. An earlier needs assessment study in the same sheriff's department had indicated that the women officers were concerned over the lack of opportunity of promotion for women in the department. They believed this was due to their overrepresentation in correctional assignments. Indications are that the women moved to other agencies for better work hours and assignments, although apparently none of the transfers involved a promotion. These findings suggest that law enforcement agencies -- particularly sheriff's departments, who use more personnel in custodial assignments -- must create more assignment alternatives and promotion options for women officers. Tabular data and 13 references are provided.
Index Term(s): Career development; Personnel retention; Police women; Turnover rates
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