Stress and Crisis management – Undercover Narcotics Unit

The use of undercover tactic is a phenomenon that has been in existence within the American police force since time immemorial.  It has at times been used in immediate ways while at times it is used in some questionable manner. A good example can be picked from the wildlife department that has recently picked on the use of the lifelike targets that help in capturing of poachers. Similarly, there has been a system where the police intelligence officers nab criminals through the use of false online information that attracts criminals to such sites (Jacobs, 1992). Those who in turn decide to login and illegally get access to such sites are then nabbed. Alternatively, the place devise a system where they create a reverse sting operation where they get involved in the sale of drugs. Through such a process, they are capable of nabbing those who use such illegal substances.

One of the areas of discretion for a narcotic team is the difficulty they face in trying to stop the use of illegal narcotics while at the same avoiding the temptation of spreading its use. For instance, the officers can use the technique of trying to sale the drugs in the streets in order to nab those who purchase them. In the event that rogue police officers are chosen to carry out such a function, then it becomes easy for them to encourage the sale of such drugs rather than stopping the sales from taking place.

The work that the police do in our country throughout the year can at times be quite tiresome and stressful. The extent of the stress that the officers do go through will in the long run determine the stress it creates on their families (Goddard and Levine, 1988).. The effects of the stress on the family of the officers has for a very long period remained a very complex matter due to the ambiguity of the roles of the officers. Moreover, the ambiguity of such roles do require that the officers use some bit of their personal discretions in order for them to excel in their duties. One area that makes it quite difficult for the officers to handle the stress that they go through at work is the lack of education on the same. Research shows that most of the officers either do not get any form of education on the management of stress or they get very minimal training on the same. All that the officers get during their training is the military sort of training on how they are expected to handle their duties. The trainers who go out of their way to teach on the management of stress do not make any emphasis on the topic, rather they just touch lightly on the same. Therefore the lack of such training normally shows up during the time when the officers finally graduate out of their various training colleges. Whenever they get stressed up by their duties, those who bear the effects of that are the family members. Apart from the training that is expected to be given to the police officers during their training sessions, they are also supposed to get more training in the course of carrying out their professional duties.  In most cases, the stress is not handled properly by the officers and as a result, it gets transferred to the next party which in most cases is the family members. Stress is normally brought about as a result of the extreme difficulties, pressure and strain that anyone does passes through in life. What stress does to an individual is that it disrupts their emotional stability as well as their mental stability. When one is in such a situation, it becomes very difficult for them to be able to reason up logically or even come up with a concrete way of getting a viable solution to an existing problem. According to Merriam and Webster, if stress is not handled properly and at the right time, then it is possible that it can affects an individual’s physical health.

The role that the police officers play in the society is what separates from the rest of the society. For instance, the officers are normally responsible for protecting both the properties and the lives of the citizens. For the police officers to be able to protect the lives of the other citizens then they must be ready to put their own lives at risk. Anytime a crime takes place, a police officer is called in to come and rescue the situation. During such occasions, the officer in charge can end up losing his or her own life, depending with the techniques used to handle such a matter. The manner in which the officers approach such a duty is what brings the point of discretion into play.

Racial and demographic differences can often contribute to bias when it comes to policing because for one the minority officers do their policing job quite differently from the whites. For instance, the ethnic minority officers are less likely to respond affirmatively whenever there is a racial concern (Harris et al. 2005).

 

 

References

 

Farkas, G. (1986). Stress in Undercover Policing. Pp. 433-40 in Psychological Services for Law Enforcement, edited by J. T. Reese and H. A. Goldstein. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office

Goddard, D. and M. Levine. (1988). Undercover The Secret Lives of an Undercover Agent: The Story of DEA Agent Michael Levine. New York: Random House

Jacobs, B. (1992)Undercover Deception Clues: A Case of Restrictive Deterrence. Criminology 31(2):281-99

Robert M. Shusta, Deena R. Levine, Herbert Z. Wong,. Philip R. Harris (2005). Impact of Cultural Diversity on Law Enforcement. Pearson Education Inc.

 


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