For the past twenty years, it has been the law in the United States that police departments must hire people without regard to race or gender. However, the opportunity for women to participate in forming police policy has been strongly resisted, mainly by their male counterparts. Women in policing are not easily accepted by their male peers, their supervisors, or their own police departments; they are viewed with skepticism. The public is, however, more accepting, welcoming and more positive about women police.
The early history of women police consisted largely of social service in which women had to meet higher standards for police employment than males, but still received lower wages. They were not permitted to perform basic patrol duties. A lot of past research on women police has been focused on whether women were capable of performing police work as far as being physically and mentally fit for doing the work. Research has shown that women, indeed, do have the ability to perform the tasks because they are mentally and physically fit. Male officers perceive women officers to be failures; they doubt women can equal them in most job skills and do not see women officers doing real police work. Most men harass and resist women officers because they fear that women would violate departmental secrets about police corruption and violence.
Women officers are interviewed and asked about their experiences within law enforcement as far as feeling inequality in the workforce. Women admit that the negative attitudes towards them from men officers are the main reason for their disappointment with police work. They believe that the departments do not value women police and they feel unappreciated. Women feel a sense of discrimination as far as work assignments. Women, themselves, believe they bring special qualities to police work such as compassion, communication skills, and maturity. I can whole-heartedly agree with these beliefs. Women and men are different and bring different qualities to any kind of work in general.
We are all aware that the CJ major is male dominated but I tend to see a wide variety of females entering this line of work. Most women see it as an easy way to get a job because for most departments, they need more women within and it is almost a guaranteed hire. However, having men discriminate against the women in the field can cause even more issues when the women are performing work tasks. It could cause women to have a bias toward male offenders and be even more lenient on women offenders. Having women in the field can save a lot of male officers’ asses, especially in cases when male officers have to deal with women offenders. There have been cases where a woman offender has tried getting a male officer for sexual harassment, especially when they have to do full body checks. This is where having a female officer can save the department many issues. Men should be more appreciative and give credit to female officers. They carry out their tasks just as well as males and bring more qualities to police work.
Here is a video that gives a story on a woman within the police department who has been discriminated against.