An organization that constantly has to deal with the public is a police department. The job of the police is to protect the life and property along with provide a feeling of safety and security within the community. Therefore, the police department, state, or city must constantly deal with external publics on a 24-hour basis. A police officer's job is to interact and communicate to the public through creative problem solving using impartial enforcement of the law. The police department enforces the laws and helps to decrease crime, which is a very demanding occupation. Including these duties are maintaining order in society, controlling traffic, and dealing with emergencies and disasters. Police officers are in contact with the public constantly, so it is only natural when things go wrong they most communicate with the public.
A police officer must be able to deal with various personalities, behaviors, demeanors, personas and characteristics in an effective manner on a daily basis. Clear and concise communication is an important skill to have as well. Police department heads must not only communicate over the phone, they must deal with the media, telephone, via e-mail, and letters. Some companies must only deal with external publics when a disaster strikes, but for a police department, that is the nature of their business so they communicate with the public frequently.
The police department (no particular city or state) is usually effective in their communication process because they position experts to deal with the media and high profile cases or events. There are education and training requirements for all officers because they must converse with the public often. Officers that deal with the media are often required to have specialized education and training. When an organization positions an expert to communicate to the media, it helps the communication process flow more effectively. Planning a strategy to deliver a message before hand helps the police department to provide a statement or facts of a situation effectively.
There are ways that the public believe police can improve on media relations. Often when a reporter wants a story from a police officer, there is a one-line of communication. The lines of communication between the media representatives and agent officials are usually one-sided. Open lines of communication would help the communication process flow more smoothly. Another way to help increase media relations between agent officials and the media is to invite the media to events that are uplifting such as charity events and police-hosted carnivals or fundraisers. This will help the media as well as the community have a better stronger relationship with agent officials. (Buhrmaster, 2008)The impact of effective communication to its external publics is extremely important. The communities want to know facts about what is happening in their neighborhood, and who better to give this information then an agent official. It is said that the "relationship between the media and law enforcement can often be defined as strained at best. Reporters, eager for a story and pressured by deadlines and heavy competition, complain that police officials obstruct...