According to Merriam-Webster (2015), cynicism is defined as “beliefs that people are generally selfish and dishonest” (Merriam-Webster). A cynic will assume nothing but the worst in the people around them. If this happens to a police officer not only does it affect the quality of the officer’s work, but it will also bring down the morale of officers working with and around him/her. A cynical officer can lead to emotional issues, misconduct in the work place, and corruption in the police force.
The two leading factors of cynicism in officers are stress and being burnt out from the daily grind of the job. Most new police officers go into the job with the intent to help and better their community. However, after years on the job, an officer witnesses the judicial system letting criminals go free and innocent civilians being harmed as a result of blind spots/loopholes within the system. These officers typically will not leave their job because they have become disenchanted with more than just their jobs. These officers have also lost faith in the…show more content… This requires that the leadership have a proactive role in promoting the principles and values of the police force. It is not enough for leadership to just spout off their core values and principles. Leadership must prove that they themselves are trustworthy. If leadership fails to prove that they are trustworthy, it can lead to cynicism in the force. Leadership must be constant and consistent. In addition, leadership must have ongoing training so that officers know what is expected of them and have a clear chain of command and open communication. Awards based on merit will also help build moral among peers and self-worth. Peer counselors/mentors are often helpful so that the officers don’t feel alone or isolated. If officers are left to their own coping devices, they may choose a more detrimental method of coping such as alcoholism or withdrawing from the support of friends and