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Women in Policing and the Gender Gap When I was a little girl I wanted to be a police officer Little did I know then that there was such a problem with becoming a policewoman Like me there are a lot of girls that want to grow up and be in law enforcement for the simple reason that they want to help people and put the bad people in jail They dont realize however they will often face harassment intimidation and discrimination In the year 2001 there was only 127 of women sworn into law enforcement positions in large police agencies with one hundred or more officers Sadly there is only 73 of women that hold top command positions in large police agencies In small police agencies which have less than one hundred police officers women make up 81 of the officers Again women hold 34 of top command positions In the 2001 Status of Women in Policing Survey it was reported that women make up 465 of the whole labor force and dramatically only represent an average of 112 of all sworn law enforcement personal This percentage is increasing very slowly In 1990 women made up 9 of law enforcement agencies At this rate of growth it will take several generations for women to achieve equality in law enforcement If things do not change this however may never happen There are many questions to why more women do not join law enforcement There is substantial evidence that men and women are both equally capable of fulfilling the job duties that police work entails Unfortunately the single largest barrier keeping women from law enforcement is the behavior of male police officers Many women are even discouraged from applying for police positions Even if women are able to look past this there is still a bias when hiring selecting and recruiting The physical entry exam keeps women from qualifying due to the emphasis on
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