stress and effects

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POLICE STRESS AND THE EFFECTS ON THE
FAMILY
E.M.U. SCHOOL OF POLICE STAFF AND COMMAND
Sergeant Corey Haines
Madison Heights Police Department
Madison Heights, MI
An applied research project submitted to
the Department of Interdisciplinary
Technology as part of the School of Police Staff and Command Program September 19, 2003
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ABSTRACT
This research identified many of the stresses that are placed on Law Enforcement officers in today’s society. This research explored so
me of the various stressors and the effects
that they may have on the officers and their fa
milies. Stress can easil
y be defined as, “a
response to something in the environment (“a st
ressor”) when the environment changes.” (J.
Mitchell, PhD, G. Bray, PhD,
Emergency Services Stress)
The purpose of this research paper was to in
vestigate how police o
fficer job stress can
negatively affect the officer and his/her famil
y. Information regarding police officer stress
relating to the officer and his/he
r family was difficult to locate
and not all forms of stress could
be identified.
The research method used for this projec
t relied upon professional papers, magazine
articles, and Internet sources.
The procedures involved using past a
nd present information obtained from books,
magazine articles, and Internet sources. Research
indicated that an extr
emely high percentage of
police officers ended up di
vorcing their spouse.
Police Officers are stressed by many things
including their supervisors, shift-work
resulting in the loss of time spen
t with their families, fellow officers, and the citizens at large. Police Officers are stressed by numerous other fact
ors such as low pay, ir
regular sleep schedules,
and conflict with family and friends. From all of
this we can conclude that police officers need
training and education to help deal with the
many challenges they face daily. With proper
support, education, and counseling
the officers will be able to
perform their job much more
efficiently and safely.
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Recommendations: This research indicated th
at when officers were
properly trained and
had the ability to recognize the e
ffects of stress, they were able
to manage their stress more
effectively.
This stress management resulted
in officers taking less stress home with them to their families and they were able to maintain higher morale
. The police departments need to take more
responsibility in educating, training, and combating
officer stress. The department also needs to
provide confidential counseling to officers that
are being affected negatively by job stress.
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
Abstract................................................................................................Page 2 Table of Contents.....................................................................................Page 4 Introduction............................................................................................Page 5 Background and Significance.......................................................................Page 6 Literature Review.....................................................................................Page 8 Procedures.............................................................................................Page 8 Results..................................................................................................Page 9 Discussion..............................................................................................Page 10 Recommendations....................................................................................Page 16 References.............................................................................................Page 18 5

INTRODUCTION
The Madison Heights Police Department, like
any other Police Department, has officers
that are being negatively affected by stress. Stre
ss can come in many forms. Some sources of
stress can be the internal or...
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