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Our police problems can be solved. Pt 2 - Better Treatment!

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posted on Aug, 16 2014 @ 02:57 AM
| II | Improve Their Quality of Life, to Improve Ours

Okay, police haters, ex-con's, ex-cops who left badly or others who figure any pay is too much pay and life without authority would be glory defined won't find anything agreeable here. Nothing I can say or illustrate can ever gain sympathy from some segments of society, and that's just how life is for being expected. Cops wouldn't be needed, if every individual truly and fundamentally DID agree with the need for them. A catch-22 for psych majors, which I'm not.

So what is the problem? Well.... How about this for a job heading?

Help Wanted!
Job Title: Customer Service and Attitude Adjustment Specialist

Work Conditions: Hostile environment to be expected. Occasional lethal threats will be encountered. Recognition will be limited, if ever received. Expect to work changing shifts with hours across all weekends and most Holidays. Overtime is expected as demanded and is not optional. 10-12hr shifts will be the rule with split shifts and double shifts required at times without advanced notice.

Pay: Starting pay $40,000 - Rising to $60,000 within 15 years. You will have a probation period of 16-18 months during which you can be dismissed for little cause, and you will have 16 weeks of residential instruction before starting that.

^^^^^ That would be an accurate description for most law enforcement positions. So is the pay.

The average starting salary for a rookie cop in the United States is about $40,000.00. Having said that, it’s important to understand that this fluctuates wildly depending on many, many factors. Cops in large cities like Los Angeles and Chicago are generally going to get paid more than officers in Moss Point, Mississippi or Show Low, Arizona, but don’t forget that the cost of living is also markedly different in each of these regions.

Yes, it it will vary between low pay and VERY low pay. That's about what that comes down to. Lets be fair tho. I found another source with a bit more range to it.

Average and Median Earnings
As of 2011, police and highway patrol officers earned an average of $27.05 an hour and $56,260 a year. Half of all police and highway patrol officers made between $19.77 and $33.65 an hour and between $41,110 and $69,990 a year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Approximately 636,410 police and patrol officers were employed in the United States as of May 2011.

Pay by Employer
The average salary for local police officers was $56,160 a year as of 2011. Police officers employed by the federal government earned less, averaging $51,690 a year. State police and highway patrol officers reported the highest earnings, with an average of $60,650 a year.

City of Milwaukee Police Employment
City of Stockton Probationary Policies
Patrol Officer Salaries in Los Angeles, CA

To get paid that, in many departments, you will have gotten 2 years of college and a criminal justice degree. That is the current preferred path it seems, at least for cities of any size and new hires. That will be a nice chunk of student loan debt for most people, to add to the stress of life on a salary which is about enough to have the basics, but stay hungry on all the time.

The article at Police Link covered a bit on that as well:

I’ve never met a cop with more than two years on the job who didn’t either work lots of overtime or have what we call a “side job.” There were officers on my own department who were able to double their paychecks consistently with overtime pay. Generally, overtime pay is either governed by federal labor law or your union contract; most cops make additional money by working extra shifts, going to court, or volunteering for specialty assignments such as local festivals, parades, high school football games, any place the community demands extra police presence.

I can say from my own life experience, my father worked a second job as much as he could manage. Things like Sears security. Jobs I knew he hated and it showed...but even in the 80's, being a cop paid well short of really comfortable for a family. Now, it's worse given increased work, lower budgets for less men on that higher work load and shifts that are almost hateful to the concept of family.

Most police departments have traditionally placed their patrol officers on a 40-hour workweek in which personnel work five consecutive 8-hour shifts, followed by two days off. In recent years, however, an increasing number of law enforcement agencies have moved to some variant of a compressed workweek. Some officers work four 10-hour shifts weekly or three 12-hour shifts (plus a time adjustment to make up the remaining 4 hours of the standard 40-hour workweek).

That article is showcasing what they believe to be good results, but if you look at it. Note the methods. They took volunteers from a very limited pool and a small number at that. I question the legitimacy of the outcome across the whole of more than half a million cops. We're seeing mistakes, judgement and other issues fatigue and chronic exhaustion from over work could definitely produce, IMO.

I also didn't see where that study even gave consideration to outside work and overtime sought for supplement to incomes.

posted on Aug, 16 2014 @ 02:57 AM
In the last section I laid out what cops get paid and what hours they work for it. Rotating shifts are common, which means across a month you may work days and night at different times. Cycles and rhythms are for normal people (cumulative health effect likely says otherwise) and missing most of life is...just....well? A part of the job.

Why?? Is society happy with this? Lets consider something ..and something real important here.

Why we should care

How was your last traffic ticket? Was the cop respectful and nice or was he short and rude? If the latter, did it take provocation or anything from you or was he just pissed to start with?

How would you be....if you just came off a 6 hour shift doing a security job, to take your 10 hour shift with the department driving a police car? Notice the total that gets to real quick. How about we look at that again was the cop on your last traffic ticket and WHICH end of that shift do you think he was on? The start of it while fresh, or the end...sore, tired and sick of anything but a bed for a few hours?

How many here have worked a 12 hour shift or more? How about regularly? Millions do, and many here, I am sure. I did as a trucker, and I'll be honest. No B.S.. There were times I pushed for needs and it was a few hours past good sense on it. Hours take a toll and I was just holding a wheel between two lines, not physically active to extremes for short periods, to sit doing paperwork for others, to drive and repeat.

Why we should care is simple. Do we want GOOD cops...or do we just want whatever they can get into a Uniform, which fits the min. requirements demanded ..and balanced to maintain numbers? Do we want cops who STAY and are HAPPY with the job they do they interact with US and come when we call 911 and demand things of them, or do we want cops falling into 'us and them' with deep rest and sleep being ...for other people?

We should care because we're on the ultimate Pointy End, when this segment of Government and authority isn't taken care of to at least a level of contentment and basic comfort. Corruption comes...Burnout is a very likely thing and turnover is getting stupid for how large a problem it is.

Los Angeles Police Department Doesn't Have Enough Qualified Recruits

Help wanted: Bangor, other Maine police departments struggle to find good applicants to join force

It's a WHOLE lot easier to get rid of questionable cops and generate the support to rid departments of bad or lazy cops ....if replacements are a realistic possibility. It's even better if replacements can be expected to hang around for more than the time it takes to see "greener grass" on the other side of the fence ....which never actually works out that way anyway.


posted on Aug, 16 2014 @ 02:57 AM

Okay, I did say somewhere along here, I would have some solutions. Here is the part I put a bit of thought into.

#1 Hours HAVE to be healthy! Knock off the 'lets try something new! What could go wrong??'. Society is FULL of stupid ideas being tried by everyone with a chance to "make a name", which often results in "making a MESS" and screwing up real world things that don't lend themselves to being screwed up. Like..police work. That can start with HOURS.

How about... EIGHT HOURS for patrol units. No required overtime. Want more coverage? HIRE more. Wanna squeeze more from less? Accept burnout, brutality cases and dumb mistakes. I'd go with more people, every time. It's less painful for all involved. Less mistakes, too.

#2 PAY enough. Many will say 'NO!'. To that I say, then what we have now is working out right, and we want more of it then? Police Chiefs and Administration work out just fine for a comfy life. Over $300,000 for the big cheese in San Francisco.

That ought to be reversed, if anything, for working cops. I wouldn't suggest anything so extreme tho. Something in the $100,000 range would probably get a MUCH higher caliber of cop through better people wanting the job, existing cops becoming comfortable with a life outside and along side work and family time without outside jobs.

Why do we create a situation where the people we MOST need are the people we work hardest to make miserable? (and I know..some never ever need cops. I'm happy for that %...general society isn't that category either).

Seriously tho...Growing up, it's the parents (and getting the other end of that now is just..oh so grand. lol) then later, it's giving little to no thought to a simple question ....

Why are the cops getting to be more and more rude with short tempers?

COULD profound dissatisfaction with the job society DOES need done, be a fair part of it?

If so...could my ideas be feasible ones? Well, it's my suggestions anyway.

Forums like Posse Comitatus may not be needed then, eh?

posted on Aug, 16 2014 @ 03:28 AM

That ought to be reversed, if anything, for working cops. I wouldn't suggest anything so extreme tho. Something in the $100,000 range would probably get a MUCH higher caliber of cop through better people wanting the job, existing cops becoming comfortable with a life outside and along side work and family time without outside jobs.

I'm not sure I agree with this one.

If level of education and intelligence is not bound to the pay scale then it can only cause more problems I think. If you give the opportunity for anyone to take on the position of authority with high pay, or the possibility of, without requiring higher learning than you are asking for it.

Canada for instance (source)

A first-class officer in Canada’s big cities now earns $80,000-$90,000 a year on average – before overtime and benefits. That makes them among the most generously compensated police in the world. During this year of hard-pressed public finances, the Toronto Police Association negotiated an 11.5-per-cent pay increase over the next four years for its members. Officers get 18 annual days of sick leave, and can bank unused leave, half of which can then be paid out in salary. They can retire at 50, with full pensions, after 30 years of service.

I think there is a pendulum that swings when you start paying a lot, and the greedy (especially the brass) get in there and it soon becomes about "me me me" than it does about getting the actual job done, or doing it well.

And Canada isn't the only place with overpaid police (along with a big list of other overpaid government employees I'm sure...)

Even in the US...

In this era of government austerity, particularly at the state and local levels, the median police salary in the small township of Saddle Brook, N.J., is more than $120,000. Virtually the entire force enjoys six-figure annual incomes. In North Brunswick, about an hour down the Garden State Parkway, the median police salary is over $110,000. Francis “Mac” Womack, the Democratic mayor of North Brunswick since 2012, defends this seemingly excessive compensation on the grounds that, while he “can go to sleep at night if we cut a recreation program,” he can’t sleep if his township is “doing without public safety” (the mayor did not specify who, exactly, was advocating a policy of no public safety).


Now take a look at some underpaid police...

The Jones County Sheriff's Department has lost 6 deputies within the last year to higher paid jobs.

"It's not that they want to get out of it, but they've got to do something else to provide for their families," said Jones County Chief of Operations Major Jamie Tedford.

The department will soon lose another one of their men because of money.

"His heart is in law enforcement, he loves what he does, he loves this job," said Sheriff Hodge.

"We sign up knowing what the pay is with the hopes that it's going to be different," said Major Tedford.

A Jones County correctional officer, who works with criminals every day, start off at $23,000.

Something tells me those aren't the same people. And that if they switched places they'd probably be leading different lives. There is a fine line between too much and too little. That line seems to get blurred with such massive discrepancies. The best situation is having a police force that is educated, that enjoys their career and earns enough to provide for their family and also pay back their student loans without earning so much it draws the wrong type of person to the field.
edit on 16-8-2014 by boncho because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 16 2014 @ 03:52 AM
a reply to: Wrabbit2000

your not far off the mark in my opinion....cops should be paid a decent amount for what they do...after all they are often dealing with undesirable elements of our society.....

as far as the overtime and working a second job goes well that just leads to ..well undesirable factors...we could also put doctors into that category...when you are overworked mistakes become a factor..but that is true in any job across the board...

half of the problem in this "the pursuit of happiness"..we as people are led to believe money is what we need to be happy and i think this is an illusion and very far from what we really need to be happy...

so as a result many work undesirable hours...even you as mentioned in trucking....this illusion of happiness is what is driving many to..well an unhappy place...stress is rampant in this society and that leads to undesirable behavior

so it is not just police that fit into this category it society (in the western world anyway) it is all of us and that seems to be getting engineered from above.....

i could go on and on but i will leave it at this...if parents had more time for their children they would both be happier and the result would be much more even minded kids growing into adults whom then can contribute to society and everyone prospers....yes there are lazy parents,drug affected etc etc..but i believe the majority of people want a better world and would work towards that if possible

my 2 cents

posted on Aug, 16 2014 @ 03:54 AM
a reply to: boncho

I think my underlying idea and real requirement to earn a higher salary would be two simple things, really.

1. The willingness and compliance with the 100% on-duty recording that is covered in part 1 (these two have to go together, or higher pay really just makes good cops better and bad ones..worse)

2. Higher pay means a higher standard and a higher expectation for maintaining standards all around. What those would be? I'm wide open to the idea of society figuring that out. That would probably end up being a fairly high bar by the time all was said and done, if a general standard were set. All the better, considering what happens when it doesn't turn out well.

edit on 8/16/2014 by Wrabbit2000 because: minor edit of word

posted on Aug, 16 2014 @ 05:08 AM
a reply to: Wrabbit2000

Number 1 would solve most of the problems right there. Pay increase based on performance and handling the situations the way they should... for sure.

Cameras should be about fixing and/or making better though. If it gets too invasive I can see it turning off a lot of normal candidates as well. Or you have the problems in some places where this has been implemented, and the police are smashing the equipment.

My point is, is it has to be fair but not powerless either. If you sink a guys salary because of one off day, (where no one was injured or had lasting issues) then it becomes the a tool similar to what you are trying to destroy.

By all means though, public employees, public surveillance.

posted on Aug, 16 2014 @ 07:19 AM

Job Title: Customer Service and Attitude Adjustment Specialist

Work Conditions: Hostile environment to be expected. Occasional lethal threats will be encountered. Recognition will be limited, if ever received. Expect to work changing shifts with hours across all weekends and most Holidays. Overtime is expected as demanded and is not optional. 10-12hr shifts will be the rule with split shifts and double shifts required at times without advanced notice.

Pay: Starting pay $40,000 - Rising to $60,000 within 15 years. You will have a probation period of 16-18 months during which you can be dismissed for little cause, and you will have 16 weeks of residential instruction before starting that.

So basically, they have to go the same route as anyone else trying to get ahead. No sympathy here. They know what they are getting in to. When I first started in the coal mines, my pay was $13.00 an hour. [ Early 80s ] You want to talk about dangerous? E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G. underground will kill you. From high voltage cables to massive equipment used in confined spaces, to rocks falling. None of that gives me the right to hurt others because I had a bad day. Under appreciated? No one thanked me for keeping their house warm, making sure the lights were on. In short, Tough. You knew the job requirements when you signed up. Stop whining and do the job right. Or find something else. Oh wait, no other job lets you beat, bully and shoot people and get away with it.

posted on Aug, 16 2014 @ 11:21 AM
Im less interested in fixing the police, and more interested in fixing the society that is policed.

With less laws, we should need less policing. Agreed? There are less points of failure for people to need to be policed. IT seems logical, anyway.

But, if i consider the complete nosedive violent crime has taken in the last 20 years in would also seem that we need less policing. So who knows. Logic doesn't seem to follow in this discussion.

But our deeply divided class based social system doesn't work. People who feel like they have equal opportunities may tend to be less hostile towards people who actually do have opportunities.

Great thread(s), Wrabbit.
something to think about, which may bring me back to post again later.

posted on Aug, 16 2014 @ 08:50 PM
Prosecute EVERY COP caught on Video immediatly,triple the penaltys for Breach of Public Trust,remove Solitary Confinement privilages for Cops in Prison and be done with it already.

posted on Aug, 16 2014 @ 08:55 PM
Of the several reasons as to why I do not want to be a police officer anymore pay is absolutely one of them.

I have 10 years with the same department, an AA degree, an AS degree in Criminal Justice Technology and a BS degree in Business Administration. My city is not "po dunk" as we have a population of 100,000 people.

I make $39,800ish a year and my benefits are pretty much garbage. Better then nothing, but most certainly nothing to write home about.

I will never reach the max out point of my salary ($55,000) because of all the pay freezes. The most I would probably ever receive will be $42K to $45K if I am lucky. That will probably take another 5 to 10 years though.

What sucks is that much money is not worth the physical and mental risk the job brings.

What also sucks is that I know that even though I am not the brightest bulb in the bunch I do KNOW that I am worth more then $39,800ish a year.

So yes I absolutely think low pay is a contributing factor as to why (if we truly are) seeing an increase in police violence, corruption and mistakes being made in the line of duty.

Not because cops are pissed off due to low pay and taking their frustrations out on people, but because quality candidates are changing their minds about being a cop, or quality cops are leaving the career to make more money. This results in departments having difficulties filling positions and subsequently choosing the only available lower quality candidates to fill those vacancies.

edit on 16-8-2014 by TorqueyThePig because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 17 2014 @ 10:18 AM
It is unbelievable how people talk about Police corruption and lawbreaking as if it were an acceptable reality, this is incredible,these behaviours are not and have never been an option.

Examples MUST BE SET.

If you work at a bank it is not acceptable to endorse THEFT because working conditions are tougher than you are comfortable with,if you cannot take the heat get out of the kitchen.

I felt like you did when I worked in the fast Food Industry,before I made pro-active advancements with my career,but I never undermined my own morals to force this pro-active change,i just made positive changes like everyone else must do.

When Police slip they ARE BREAKING THE PUBLIC TRUST AND ALSO BREAKING LAWS.These are not small procedural errors many of these crimes are FELONIES.

As we are seeing the Police Industry is changing as fast as every other sector of society, the olde school bad apples are being rooted out in Politics,in Big Business,and in Police Departments,the Court System and legal Systems are also being changed at light speed,Judges and prosecutors and crooked Lawyers are being outed almost daily now.

This change is unprecedented and will not be stopping anytime soon,the information revolution has made it possible to now hold EVERYONE INVOLVED IN THE PROCESSES ACCOUNTABLE TO THE TENTH DEGREE, there are NO MORE cracks to hide in.

As I have said before, when we see EVERY COP on video charged and investigated then we will have a toe-hold on making impactfull positive changes.

I agree the Salaries should be much higher,but considering how corrupt the system is we can see why police men and women are kept broke and needy,it makes them mallable and they can be manipulated easier by a Flawed System.

I am a huge supporter of Civil Support Systems, but I am a bigger supporter of doing the right things,and when I see Police comitting Felonies on the internet I demand answers immediatly,no exceptions,as do most people.

I am willing to support any changes the existing Police men and Women deem needed,they are on the front lines and they know what they need,but I am not willing to support ONE SINGLE CROOKED COP or ANYONE HOLDING THE BLUE LINE FOR THEM............NOT ONE..........

edit on 17-8-2014 by one4all because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 17 2014 @ 10:33 AM
a reply to: Wrabbit2000

All of your posts are wrong on this are wrong.
I can solve it for you.

Want a better cop?

Higher cops with higher IQs (instead of avoiding lower IQ's as is the practice).
Drug test regularly (including steroids).
Don't hire vets or anyone that has already been trained in a way different than a cops training.

As for the pay, it's about right for the work. 100,000 is laughable. Even the smallest towns would be paying out at least a million a day for something that isn't that important. They aren't going to stop beating and killing people because they have money. The type of people that become cops generally have a certain type of personality (they all hang at one bar here in town and they constantly try to exert authority and even fight people off duty).

So again.. you want to fix the cop problem.
Hire smarter cops with higher IQ's
Drug test regularly including steroids
and don't hire vets or anyone with training other than their police training.

posted on Aug, 17 2014 @ 01:14 PM
a reply to: GogoVicMorrow

So...You figure you will somehow attract people of even higher intelligence with the same garbage pay and conditions?

What part of the approach so far utterly failing to accomplish you see changing, while laughing at the idea of paying people better as you try and attract a significantly better level of recruit?

You can't just look at society, close your eyes and "make it so". If the job COULD attract better people, don't you think it would be? I doubt any city sits there..whatever the hate filled net rumors may be...and says "How many idiots can we find to hand a gun to with the authority to use it, today?".

They get the best they can and cities will always get what they pay for. Pay cheap, get cheap. In this is a very painful experience for many, when it happens.

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