Relationship Between Private And Public Police Essay

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The relationship between private and public police can probably best be described as hostile. Relations between law enforcement officers and security professionals are tainted by claims on both sides of unprofessional behavior and questions of ethics and where loyalties lie. However, private and public police officers are being thrown together more and more often and this takes four forms: Public and private police run joint operations, the police hire private firms, private firms hire the police, and hybrid policing. Law enforcement officers consider security professionals as bought and paid for “rent-a-cops”, who are responsible only to the company that employs them. Law enforcement officers maintain that the Constitution of the United States is their boss. They are proud of the training and educational standards required of them and do not believe that there are the same standards for becoming a security professional. According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, many cities facing budget issues are hiring private security guards over police officers. “Oakland police say they consider unarmed guards acceptable, but don't support armed guards. People want to go with armed guards because they believe it's cheaper, but they lack adequate training [and] background checks," said spokesman Jeff Thomason. "Oakland police are better prepared for this city's streets than a few security guards."” (White, 2009). In an article in Covert Action Quarterly, law enforcement begrudgingly admits ““The era of dual law enforcement is here as government and corporations hire rent-a-cops to guard businesses and gated communities and to break strikes.” (Zielinski, date unknown). Like it or not, however, it appears that security professionals are here to stay. “Some areas of New Orleans have used armed private patrols since
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