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
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
- How the data disproves the myth of Mayberry
- Under-resourced and understaffed: How small LE agencies address mental health outreach
- It’s personal: Understanding the risks poachers pose to LE
- The challenge of hiring and keeping officers in small and rural agencies
- Safety and wellness threats are different for rural officers — here’s what police leaders need to know
- ‘It does happen here!’: Why rural cops need tacmed training, equipment
- Why de-escalation is a rural cop's lifeline
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