Be Prepared With Research
Before your interview, research the police department you are applying to. Find out what region they serve and protect, and learn how the community views police officers. It is important to know the crime rate of this community and what issues are most prevalent there.
Next, read through the job description, and figure out what tasks are regularly required for this position. For instance, you might have to do a lot of traffic control, drug raids and crowd control, and you may have to patrol high-crime areas. Knowing all of this information can help you make your answer more specific to this particular police department.
Excessive Stress Can Be A Problem
Being a police officer can also be quite stressful.
Since you will never know what you have to deal with next, your body and your brain will always be exposed to some level of tension during your shift.
In the long run, this can lead to serious health issues since constant stress is just not good for us.
Focus On Collaborative Approaches To Policing
Police departments should rely upon collaborative approaches that respect the dignity of individuals within the community focus on problem-solving and are generally more community-centered and build community trust. Tactics might include relying upon the use of structural and environment strategies to reduce crimes, such as adding lighting in hot spot areas, securing abandoned buildings, and building partnerships with community members to address specific crimes. The widespread and systematic use of increasing police-civilian encounters through stop, frisk, and questioning, misdemeanor arrests, tickets, and summonses for less serious offenses should be prohibited.
Don’t Miss: How Do You Find A Police Report Online
Municipal Police Force Salaries & Benefits
In comparison to the federal police force, the municipal police agencies offer slightly higher salaries.
The Calgary Police Service offers a starting salary of approximately $66,000/year.
The Vancouver Police Department offers new hires $70,154/year with an incremental increase to $90,198 after 3 years. Benefits include paid vacation, medical and dental benefits and a BC Municipal Pension Plan membership.
The Toronto Police Service has a starting salary of $63,564.98 for their cadets. After year 3, police officers receive an annual salary of $90,836. Benefits include paid vacation, family medical and dental benefits, life insurance, pension plan, parental/maternity leave and more.
Considering that the median income for individual Canadians was $36,400 in 2018, according to Statistics Canada, the starting salary for a Canadian police officer is an attractive one.
When deciding between the federal or municipal level, keep in mind that while the RCMP might have a lower salary, the role involves police duties at the international, federal, provincial and municipal levels with a much wider variety in operational and administrative opportunities.Some specializations that are unique to the RCMP are: Integrated Border Enforcement Team, National Security, Marine Services, International Peace Operations and many, many more.
The Benefits Of Reserve Officers In Modern Policing
Utilizing the strengths and expertise of volunteers for ultimate agency transparency
Police agencies in the United States are largely based upon the model of Sir Robert Peels London-based Metropolitan Police and his nine principles of policing.
Peels seventh principle focused on the importance for the police to maintain at all times a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and that the public are the police. This principles importance to modern policing is evident in current police-community relations. What better way to ensure that those in the community can relate with and understand the role of policing in society than to properly train them to serve in part-time roles while also serving in other positions and roles in society?
Enlisting members of society to serve in roles within police agencies allows for the ultimate transparency, enabling community members to provide input, understand the role and function of policing, and learn first-hand about the complexities of serving society in this role.
Read Also: How To Fix The Police System
Irregular Shifts Are A Problem
In general, police officers face quite irregular shifts and often dont know how the next weeks will look like for them.
This can be rather annoying, especially if you have a family and dont know how to manage your private life since you often dont know the exact hours of your shift.
This makes it really difficult since you will never know whether you will be able to pick up your kids the next week or not.
A Police Officer’s Job Is Never Routine
Every day has the potential to be completely different from the one before. There’s no better environment than law enforcement for those who hate monotony. Routine can change on a dime.
Not only does each shift have the potential to be different from the last, but the opportunities to diversify your job tasks are usually abundant. Are you tired of patrol? Find out what’s involved in transferring into investigations. Bored of investigating traffic crashes? Consider working toward becoming a K-9 officer.
Law enforcement allows motivated people to try their hand at a host of unique and interesting skills and jobs.
Also Check: How Much Money Do Police Make
Step : Background Investigation
All Peace Officer candidates must undergo a thorough background investigation which includes a drug test. When directed by the academy staff, Pre-Service Candidates should contact Professional Screening and Information . The current cost for the PSI background investigation for Pre-Service Candidates is $245.00 and is payable online. Contact your academy of choice to obtain the organization code and Chain of Custody form, when applicable, for the drug test. Once completed, the PSI background investigation results will be forwarded to the chosen academy.
You Will See Really Bad And Sad Things During Your Career
Police officers also get confronted with really bad things during their careers.
This is quite logical since whenever you need the police, something bad has happened to others.
In fact, many police officers see things during their career that are that disgusting that they have difficulties to mentally process and to forget them their whole lives.
Thus, before deciding for a career as police officer, make sure that you are mentally stable enough to deal with those pictures in your head that will not look pretty most of the time.
You May Like: How Many Years To Become A Police Officer
Pro #: Community Pride
Officers genuinely care about making a positive impact in their community. Those who truly love the work will go to extra lengths for others. Police work affords the opportunity for giving back both on duty and off. It is unique devotion to people which comes along with the territory. You will see many men and women of uniform volunteering within their community to make a difference. These charities bridge community partnerships and sometimes close the gap of societal isolation plaguing officers who disassociate.
Good Relationship With Emergency Responders
Local police officers and fire fighters should know their way around the K-12 campuses within their jurisdiction. That kind of familiarity requires effort from school administrators and security. Someone on the team should take on the responsibility of forming a strong working relationship with these emergency responders.
Find out the names of the ranking police officer and fire official responsible for your school. Call each and make an appointment to visit. Say that you want to get acquainted and to help them get to understand what they need to know about the school or schools you are representing. Ask the police officer about the state of crime in your neighborhoods. What incidents of petty crime? What incidents of serious crime? What does he or she think that means to the security needs of your school? Invite the officer or someone he or she appoints for a visit to the school to solicit advice. Do the same thing with the fire department.
When your emergency responders visit individual schools, encourage school administrators, teachers and staff to express appreciation for their service. Make them feel welcome and interested in returning. Ask administrators to share dates of special events, such as Grandparents Day and annual outdoor celebrations, so responders can make plans to account for significant increases in visitors and changes in operations.
Stacey L. Shipley, Bruce A. Arrigo, in, 2012
Don’t Miss: How Do You Become A Police Officer In Minnesota
Police Officers Can Earn A Decent Salary
Depending on the state you live in and your educational level, you can also earn pretty decent money from being a police officer.
While you will not get rich in most cases, you will still be able to provide a decent life for you and your family.
However, before you decide for a police officer career due to the salary, make sure to inform yourself about what the salary of a policeman in your area really looks like since it greatly differs across states.
Federal Police Force Salary & Benefits
If youre interested in the federal police force, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police offers new hires $53,144/year with an incremental increase to $86,110 within 3 years of employment. Benefits include paid vacation days, an RCMP pension plan, medical, dental and family health plans and group life insurance. The RCMP also offers generous maternity and parental allowances as well as financial support for continuing education and professional development opportunities.
Recommended Reading: What You Need To Become A Police Officer
Paperwork Is Part Of Being A Police Officer
Being a police officer is not only about action. It also requires plenty of paperwork and also legal knowledge.
In fact, many police officers have to spend significant amounts of time on paperwork and other administrative tasks.
Consequently, make sure that you are also willing to do this kind of work before deciding to become a police officer.
Why Is A Police Officer Degree Needed
If youre wondering why police officers are more likely to need college degrees than they used to be, thats a good question. Police matters have become more challenging, so it makes sense that law enforcement officers need a greater understanding of the law, legal and investigative procedures, and complex sociological, psychological and cultural issues. Researchers have discovered that police officers who complete a minimum of two years of college study are statistically less likely to use force unnecessarily or to be the subject of misconduct complaints, according to The Hill.
From a purely practical perspective, many officers pursue a degree even when its not mandatory because of incentives that include pay bonuses and salary increases.
Don’t Miss: How To View Police Reports Online
You Seek A Job That Will Make You Proud
Youd be hard pressed to find a group of individuals more proud than the friends and family members of law enforcement professionals. Its also true that the officers themselves form a bond you wont find in many other professions.
These individuals stand by one another in good times and bad achievements are celebrated and tragedies are mourned across the entire network. Police officers have a kinship bond that is formed by providing safety and support for each other throughout their law enforcement careers, Ardolf explains.
Police officers have also earned the respect and appreciation of those in their community by taking an oath to serve and protect the civilians in their jurisdiction. Its true there are some who are resentful of law enforcement, but most people recognize the sacrifice and dedication officers put forth on a daily basis. The job satisfaction you can find in an active law enforcement role like this one is a big reason to become a police officer.
Create Specialized Traffic Patrol Officers
The vast majority of police-civilian interactions happen on the road. According to a 2015 Department of Justice report, of the 50 million Americans who came into contact with the police that year, 25 million were pulled over in a car they were driving or were a passenger in . Another 8 million were involved in a car accident. And many of the 9 million who called the police to report non-crimes were reporting traffic accidents.
There is no justifiable reason why armed police officers should be in charge of road safety. Police officers are not hired for a particular talent in highway navigation, accident report taking, or citation writing. And deploying armed officers to perform such routine tasks introduces the risk of unnecessary lethal force into many millions of encounters every year. The police killing of Philando Castile in 2016 was one instance of a routine traffic stop going horribly wrong and it simply wouldnt have happened if the officer hadnt been carrying a gun. Sandra Blands arrest and subsequent suicide following a failure to signal a lane change was another.
Some US cities are even beginning to take steps in this direction, largely because armed police officers are a uniquely expensive way to handle traffic patrol. In 2017, the city of New Orleans endorsed NOPD hiring third-party report-takers for accidents in which there is no injury and no concern about a driver under the influence.
You May Like: How To Ask Police A Question
Frequently Asked Questions For The Police Officer Exam
Q: I see the Police Officer exam is being offered in 2022. I took it in 2021, do I need to apply and take the exam again to remain on the eligible list?A: No. Your score from the exam in 2021, will determine your ranking on the eligible list and will be good for two years .
Q: How many times can someone take the exam?A: Candidates are eligible to participate each time the exam is offered, whether every two years or annually. If candidates participate in the annual cycle, the most recent test score will be used for ranking on the eligible list. A candidate could take the most recent exam, fail, and no longer appear on any eligible list.
Q: I participated in the 2021 Police Officer exam and choose not to take the exam in 2022, how does this impact my ranking on the eligible list?A: All test takers that participate in the 2022 exam will be merged onto the eligible list based on scores and statutory preferences, such as Veterans and residency.
Q: Am I qualified to take the Police Officer exam?A: Any entrance qualifications and requirements for the position will be listed on the exam announcement. Please carefully review these qualifications and requirements to be sure you meet them before you apply.
Q: How do I apply for the Police Officer exam?A: Read the Police Officer exam poster and apply online when it is available.
Q: When will I receive my exam results?A: Results will be emailed to you as soon as they are available.
Police Officers Are Problem Solvers
Yes, you’ll occasionally chase people, and you might be called upon to outsmart bad guys, but in the end, police work is all about problem-solving.
Officers often work with individuals in conflict to come up with often mutually agreeable solutions. With the advent of community-oriented policing, a great deal of police work now involves helping people solve problems to keep them out of the criminal justice system rather than put them in it.
Don’t Miss: Why I Want To Be A Police Officer
Example Answer : Help People In Need
“When I was five years old, I was in a bad car accident. I was confused and scared until a police officer picked me up. They assured me that everything was okay and made me feel safe and comfortable. Due to the fast response of their team, my mother also made it out of the crash alive. Ever since then, I have wanted to give back and help others in dangerous situations. I want to be the person they call when they need help. Whether this means helping someone who broke their arm or pulling a victim from a crash site, I want to be the person they remember for the rest of their lives.”
Use Video Recording To Promote Accountability
Legislatures should require that police interrogations be electronically recorded “during the time in which a reasonable person in the subjects position would consider self to be in custody and a law enforcement officers questioning is likely to elicit incriminating responses.” If video recording is used, the camera should record both the interrogator and the person being interrogated. Police officers should wear body worn cameras with applicable privacy protections including creating protocols that require that cameras remain activated and guard against the tampering of footage.
Recommended Reading: What Do You Need To Be A Police Detective
Hold Police Departments Responsible For Negligence
To promote accountability, local, state, and county legislatures should pass legislation that requires police departments to pay half the amount of civil judgments that stem from police misconduct lawsuits. Where insurance companies pay for the civil judgments from police misconduct lawsuits, legislatures should allow insurance claims to seek compensation from police departments that should have known that the police officer in question would use excessive force. Furthermore, legislatures should provide a negligent hiring cause of action against police departments for employing an officer who the department should have known is likely to engage in excessive force.
Example Answer : Build A Relationship With The Community
“I want to be a police officer to help restore the relationship between the police and the community. I have always viewed the police as people who want to help others, which is extremely important to me. While living in this community, I have noticed that the public could respect and trust the police more. As an officer, I plan to make an effort to rebuild this important relationship. I think that with a more positive police presence, we can gain people’s trust again and help them live better lives.”
Don’t Miss: What Is The Best Police Radar Detector