Written by: Egidio A. Diodati
Managing Diversity: Gender and Other Issues
The Everly Police Department is facing a problem in which there is not an policy or procedure in which complaints from the newly formed Diversity Complaint Bureau can follow to resolve the complaints that are being submitted.
Recently a report was made public by the Minority Police Officers Organization regarding the lack of diversity within the Everly Police Department. Results detailed the fact the Everly Police Department is a male dominated and paramilitary force and it has not taken any steps in order to promote or celebrate it. Numbers show that the majority of all force members are white males, with the minority being women, Hispanics, African-Americans and Asians.
Since this report was made public the newly appointed assistant superintendant of public for administration, Linda Michaelson, has been given the role of damage controller in order to reverse the results of the report and show the public that the Everly Police Department is diverse and that they have the right procedures in place for employees to submit their complaints regarding diversity in the department.
Linda started by formulating a plan for a new bureau within the Internal Affairs Bureau called Diversity Complaints. This plan was approved by both the superintendant and the city council and was put into action. The plan brought forward some hesitation from both mid-level field-commanders and union representative as they felt as if someone was always going to be looking over their work and it was not approved into agreements by union officials. The plan was put into action anyway and proved to be successful with 7 complaints submitted within the first month.
Complaints are submitted by forms which can be accessed through a variety of sources, including electronically (on-line) and hardcopy (a copy mailed to each employee, and located visibly in all departments). Once a form is complete, it is submitted via email or regular post. From a complete formal complaint, an internal affairs detective would investigate it and form a reasonable resolution.
Linda suggested that the ending resolution of a complaint could come in the form of sensitivity training to employees or possible position dismissal of employees involved. Once a resolution has been reached the complaining employee would be contacted.
With seven complaints in one month, reviewed and investigated, Linda and her fellow diversity bureau employees had one more step to take and that was to resolve the complaints in fashion in which all parties involved would be disciplined, should the complaint be legitimate after the complaint was investigated. This is where Linda was stumped.
Linda needs to formulate a guideline for the Diversity Bureau to follow once a complaints investigation is complete. The guidelines must be fair to the parties involved. Another problem is that each complaint is going to be different so it is going to hard to set a resolution for each and every complaint that may be submitted.
Linda Michaelson has been with the Everly Police Department for 22 years and was the key player in the making of the ‘Hostile Work Environment’ report and implementation process of a new bureau within the Internal Affairs Bureau called ‘Diversity Complaint’ within the department. She like most started off as a patrol officer and moved her way up into higher positions within the department. According to the case however, these moves up did not come easily without critism and judgement from other officers, as she was a female in a male dominated field of work. Her positions have included being a patrol officer, a public school safety officer, a contact for the detective bureau and most recently an assistant superintendent of police for administration.
Linda’s father was a retired sergeant with the Everly Police...
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