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Life as a rural law enforcement officer

From a lack of protective equipment to being hours from backup, small town cops face many challenges not seen by their urban counterparts


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According to Bureau of Justice statistics, nearly half of all local police departments have fewer than 10 officers. Three in four of the departments (75%) have no more than two dozen officers. And nine in 10 employ fewer than 50 sworn officers.

Policing is tough, but even more challenging when you consider the many responsibilities officers face in smaller departments, often responding to calls without backup and across large geographical distances.

In this episode of Policing Matters, host Jim Dudley chats with Police1 columnist Kathleen Dias, who writes features and news analysis on topics of concern to law enforcement professionals serving in rural and remote locations. She uses her background in writing, teaching and marketing to advocate for professional levels of training and equipment for rural officers, open channels of communication for isolated departments, and dispel myths about rural policing.

Learn more about rural policing


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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