May 15, 2011
Relationship between Private and Public Police
The relationship between private and public police officers has been a topic of debate for decades. Both have a responsibility to provide a certain level protection to the public and still societal views of private and public police can be blurry. However, one view remains constant and that is society has just as much need for private police protection as they do public police protection. An understanding, positive working relationship between both private and public police is beneficial for all parties involved.
Although some similarities between public and private police exist, there are some differences that cannot be overlooked. One major difference is private police are contracted to provide protection to specific locations or people. Over the years the need for private security has increased tenfold. This increased need may be attributed to the growing number of criminal acts committed by juveniles, drug users, gangs, or even cybercriminals (Clifford, 2004). It may also be attributed to the decreased number of sworn law enforcement, which has left many communities lacking adequate protection. Financially speaking, police departments around the country have been stretched and therefore have to rely on private security to pick-up the slack. Areas traditionally policed by sworn officers, such as parks and alleys, are patrolled by private security (Pastor, 2010).
Recently police departments have had to cut back on the number of police offers and in turn had to shed some of the duties they deemed to be of less priority (Brunet, 2008). Some of these duties include traffic control during weddings, funerals, and major sporting events. As a result of the cutbacks, some police officers take advantage of off-duty work as hired private police. They have to opportunity to satisfy public need and earn higher wages (Brunet, 2008). The financial situations plaguing police...