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Women in Policing

Back to Women in Policing Index

Law Enforcement
A Great Job For Women!
And Women Are Great For the Job!



Why is Policing an Important Career for Women?

Police experts nationwide have long held that increasing the number of female officers is key to the success of community policing goals, key to reducing police brutality, and essential to better handling of the crimes of domestic violence and rape.

Two decades of studies have consistently found that women bring a unique and very beneficial style to policing. Most outstanding is women's ability to verbally de-escalate volatile situations. Relative to male officers, women have dramatically lower rates of use of excessive force, of officer involved shootings, and a lower rate of citizen complaints.

More women and minorities on our police forces are needed to broaden the narrow policing perspectives that have dominated our communities for too long.

What are the Requirements?
You must have a high school diploma, and have completed an accredited 16 week police academy course.

You can go through the Santa Rosa Police Academy by attending either the intensive 16 week program or the one year evening program. Currently, a number of local departments. Are offering a number of scholarships for the academy course. Call them now! And tell a friend!

What is the Pay?
Local starting pay for officers is $3,000 to over $4,000 a month.(Definitely tell a friend!)

Isn't Police Work Dangerous?
No! It's a tenacious and harmful myth that police work is dangerous. According to Department of Labor statistics, police work ranks relatively low on ratings of occupational fatalities. Policing has fatality rates comparable to such common occupations as electricians, construction workers, and truckers. Also, contrary to common belief, half of all police on the job fatalities are caused by auto accidents, not by guns. The myth of dangerousness keeps too many women from considering police work as a career.

What about Sexual Harassment?
It is true that the rate of sexual harassment in policing is much higher than in other occupations. Female officers consistently rate the prejudiced attitude of their male coworkers to be the biggest stress of their jobs.

One important sign of improvement in the last few years is that female officers are beginning to feel safe enough to protest the harassment. Another indicator of change in our county is that four female officers who quit their jobs at Santa Rosa Police Department this year because of the hostility, were all quickly rehired by another local law enforcement agency. It used to be that any woman who complained out loud was sounding the death knell of her career. It's getting better!

Why is policing a great career for women?
Young women and second career women alike find that police work combines diverse challenges, good pay and benefits, and the strong appeal of community involvement. Make sure that women and girls know about the opportunities in law enforcement:

  • To use communication skills to resolve community conflicts!
  • To work with and protect the full diversity of their town!
  • To enjoy ongoing training in a wide variety of skills and career paths!
  • To receive excellent pay and benefits!
  • Extra Bilingual Pay!

Where Can I Get More Information?

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Copyright Marie De Santis,
Women's Justice Center,



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