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Use of force, officer morale, navigating Gen Z & more: Counting down 10 of the biggest issues facing law enforcement in 2022

Take a deep dive into the hot button topics impacting policing nationwide with Policing Matters host Jim Dudley and his guest Janay Gasparini

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In this special year-end episode, Policing Matters podcast host Jim Dudley is once again joined by Janay Gasparini, Ph.D., to take a deep dive into the critical issues impacting law enforcement in 2022. Jim and Janay discuss the following 10 key areas:

1. Emerging forms and strategies in use of force

Top quotes from this segment:

“I think we are seeing a lot is this change in our hands-on strategies to better reflect controlling subjects as opposed to anything that might look like excessive use of force.”

“When do you think we are going to see a committee in Congress that says let’s listen to experts before we make legislative changes?”

Additional resources:

2. Officer morale

Top quotes from this segment:

“Have there really been any shifts since last year? We had our state of the industry survey with 75% of officers reporting that morale is down since last year, so it begs the question of ‘Where are we at the end of 2022?’”

“First-line supervisors matter a whole heck of a lot more than we realize.”

Additional resources:

3. Importance of direct supervisors/leadership

Additional resource:

The 22 leadership traits cops are looking for in their supervisors in 2022

4. Navigating Gen Z

Top quotes from this segment:

“There is so much about Gen Z that we know from the research that doesn’t fit with our traditional policing tenets.”

“Meet them where they are. And where are they? They are online.”

5. Virtual reality training

Top quotes from this segment:

“As a recruitment tool, as a training tool, it is going to do very well with Gen Z. It is great for that, but I was really interested to see how it is being used in other facets of the justice system and not just for use of force scenarios.”

“We have only begun to realize the potential of using virtual reality for our officers.”

Additional resources:

6. Police suicide, officer mental wellness

Top quote from this segment:

“I do believe with younger officers that they seem to be more aware of the self-care piece, of the realities of the job.”

Additional resources:

7. Ambushes on police

Additional resource:

8. Refunding the police

“When these policies actually play out on the street level you see the stark difference between what is on paper and what is in reality.”

9. Crime and policing as a national issue at midterm elections

Top quotes from this segment:

“We understand the spirit behind bail reform but when I go into work and I see the latest domestic violence case come across and someone has forced themselves into their partner’s apartment and attempted a strangulation and this person was released on an appearance ticket, it just doesn’t sit well with me.”

“As much as the public thinks that the police have the last say in who gets arrested and who goes to prison, there is a huge process in between that initial arrest and the jail door slamming. It is public defenders, district attorneys, judges, juries and legislators.”

10. The great resignation

Top quote from this segment:

“This is not just officers leaving at the age of retirement, but this is officers leaving for other jobs.”

What do you think was the most critical issue impacting law enforcement this year? Email

This episode of Policing Matters is sponsored by Utility. Utility provides a universe of intuitive solutions for effectively capturing, analyzing, managing, and sharing video evidence. Technologies include a variety of cameras, sensors, and devices, as well as situational awareness software solutions for law enforcement, first responders, transportation agencies, and utility providers. To learn more about Utility and its technology solutions, visit


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Policing Matters law enforcement podcast with host Jim Dudley features law enforcement and criminal justice experts discussing critical issues in policing