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Crime Prevention, Crime Repression, and Policing: Attitudes of Police Recruits Towards Their Role in Crime Control

NCJ Number
International Journal of Comparative and Applied Criminal Justice Volume: 29 Issue: 2 Dated: Fall 2005 Pages: 123-148
Marc Alain; Chantal Baril
Date Published
26 pages
This study examined police officer attitudes about themselves, their profession, crime, and their role in society using a sample of French police officers.
Year 1 results are presented from a 5-year longitudinal study conducted with 723 French police recruits admitted to the Quebec Police School during 2001-2002. Year 1-survey results indicated a change in officer attitudes due to the difference between preconceived notions of police work and the actual duties involved in police work. Specifically, officer attitudes about their role in society held firm while changes occurred in their beliefs about the traditional core cultural values of the police profession. The authors suggest that police recruit training and education should better prepare recruits for the reality of law enforcement work. They recommend changes in how recruits are integrated into law enforcement work and call for increased organizational support for new police members. Questionnaires were completed by 723 police recruits during week 8 of their training program and then again exactly 1 year later, following their graduation. Survey questions focused on participants’ working status, core attitudes regarding the role of police, frustration on the job, and on how the traditional police culture was impacting recruits. Future research should focus on measuring and monitoring the resilience and the use of skills and abilities acquired by police recruits during their training and education. Tables, notes, references


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