Date of Conferral
Dr. Jana Price-Sharps
Policing has long been recognized by experts in the field as a stressful, unpredictable, emotionally exhausting, and dangerous occupation. Stress and contributing risk factors have lasting and sometimes fatal results among police officers. The purpose of this quantitative study was to determine if there is a relationship between symptoms of depression and 3 constructs of the Personal Observation Wellness and Evaluation Report--Power Portfolio (PP) survey, specifically administrative and organizational pressures, emotional, physical, psychological threats, and lack of administrative support. Archival data from the National Police Suicide Foundation were used. The independent variable was symptoms of depression as measured by the PP. The dependent variables were administrative and organizational pressures, physical and psychological threats, and lack of support as measured by the work-related problems domain of the PP. The participants (N = 150) consisted of officers employed by local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies throughout the United States. The results of the regression analysis and ANOVA were significant for the 3 research questions. The independent variable depression was related to work-related problems, work-related punishments, and the overall score reflecting participants feelings about their work as police officers. The results illustrate that police officers encounter organizational/administration demands with added stressors that accumulatively can develop into maladaptive coping mechanism and skills. Implications for positive social change include the development of mandatory interventions tailored to meet the need of individual police officers. These and other regulations, training, and protocols may reduce officers' work-related stress and improve the relationship between line and administrative personnel.