Survey: 61% of responders say their job has gotten harder in last 18 months

Respondents listed staffing issues, public perception and COVID-19 as the biggest challenges

By Police1 Staff 

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. — A new survey of nearly 300 first responders found that resources such as budget and staffing are not keeping up with greater challenges in the public safety workplace, according to data from Rave Mobile Safety

The 2022 Survey Report: Public Safety Trends, which ran from December 2021 to January 2022, aimed to understand priorities and challenges among cops, firefighters, EMTs, dispatchers and other public safety personnel. 

Notable findings from the survey include: 

  • Work challenges: 61% said their jobs have become harder over the past 18 months, while public safety personnel are 29% more likely than other public sector workers to say their job has gotten harder. 

  • Public safety challenges: The top three challenges for public safety personnel over the past 18 months are COVID-19 (83%), hiring and staffing (72%) and public perceptions of first responders/law enforcement (61%). 

  • Public safety concerns: Respondents were very concerned about three key factors that will impact public safety in the coming year: hiring and staffing (60%), public perception of law enforcement (58%) and mental health (56%).   

  • Mental health: 72% agree that first responders and mental health professionals should respond together and 84% say information on a person’s mental health history would be extremely (49%) or very (35%) helpful. And 52% of respondents said their agency is increasing training for first responders and 36% said their agency is establishing a crisis intervention team. 

  • Communication: The mode of communication most used by respondents to alert residents is social media (63%), followed by phone call (47%), broadcast system (47%), SMS (44%) and email (34%). And 10% of respondents said they don’t have a system to communicate with residents. 

For the full report, see here.

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