Date of Conferral





Public Policy and Administration


Deborah Laufersweiler-Dwyer


Police supervisors who enjoy membership in their subordinates' police union may contribute to organizational discord by failing to enforce organizational policy among their subordinates. The purpose of this multiple case study was to examine the perceptions of 9 municipal chiefs from a west coast state in the United States regarding how supervisors' membership in their subordinates' police union affects policy enforcement and how supervisor enforcement of policy may impact police officer discipline. The conceptual framework was based on dual-commitment conflict theory. Data were collected using semi structured interviews and e-mail questionnaires. Data were member checked and cross-interpreted through coded analysis. Findings indicated that supervisors' membership in their subordinates' police union affected disciplinary outcomes. Participants' recommendations to address dual-commitment conflict included removal of supervisors from their subordinates' union, removal of supervisors' investigative duties, and outsourcing of critical investigations involving subordinates. The implications for social change can be observed in increased organizational transparency and police accountability, which may assist in enhancing police-community relationships.