Meeting the needs of marginalized groups and providing vulnerable populations with the needed security and assistance are two of the key goals that the law enforcement needs to meet when addressing the issues of vulnerable populations. However, the specified tasks are rather difficult to attain due to the presence of diversity issues in the police (Hall, Hall, & Perry, 2016). Caused by the presence of inequality and prejudices in contemporary society, ethnic and gender diversity issues should be resolve by education and introduction of employment opportunities so that marginalized groups and representatives of minorities could be protected.
Problems associated with ethnic and gender diversity are quite numerous in a range of domains apart from the police. However, since the latter is expected to serve the function of safeguarding citizens and reducing crime rates, the levels of ethnic and gender diversity in it have a particularly detrimental effect on the relationships within society. The lack of representation of African American and Asian people in the police is one of the examples of low ethnic diversity in the target setting. Indeed, although African American and Asian the police officers exist, they are in the minority, whereas white the policemen represent most of the law enforcement (Hall et al., 2016). The specified phenomenon leads to underrepresentation of the two groups in question, as well as other ethnicities, in the police. As a result, the efficacy of addressing the needs of the described groups or, at the very least, identifying these needs, becomes drastically low.
As for gender diversity issues in the police, the underrepresentation of women in the police. Although there are female the police officers, they are clearly in the minority, whereas most of the jobs are filled by men (Ozkan, Worrall, & Piquero, 2016). One could claim that the specified inconsistency is justified by the requirements set for the police officers, namely, the need to apply significant physical force during arrests, which women may not have. Nonetheless, the role that women play in the police has been quite small despite the presence of jobs in the police department that do not require the same physical characteristics as the law enforcement unit itself (Ozkan et al., 2016). Therefore, the problems associated with the representation of women in the police needs to be addressed.
The issue of gender diversity is particularly important given the fact that performing searches on suspects is one of the tasks that the police officers have to perform as a part of their workplace duties. Since citizens have the right to be asked for the specified process to be performed by the police officer of their sex, the representation of women as a vulnerable group is crucial in the police (Ozkan et al., 2016). Thus, the problem of the lack of gender diversity has to be managed on a statewide level in the police departments so that the needs of vulnerable populations could be met.
Addressing the problem of low diversity rates in the police needs to start with the reconsideration of recruitment standards, as well as the possible presence of biases toward diversity among the police officers and leaders. Namely, the process of recruitment has to be shaped toward inclusion, offering people belonging to ethnic minorities, particularly, people of African American and Asian descent, to be employed at the police department. Similarly, more options should be provided for hiring female the police officers. Specifically, the principle of 50% women, 50% men should be deployed in the target setting, and supervision over compliance with the specified standard should be introduced into the law enforcement environment. Thus, improvements concerning diversity will be observed.
Hall, A. V., Hall, E. V., & Perry, J. L. (2016). Black and blue: Exploring racial bias and law enforcement in the killings of unarmed black male civilians. American Psychologist, 71(3), 175.
Ozkan, T., Worrall, J. L., & Piquero, A. R. (2016). Does minority representation in police agencies reduce assaults on the police? American Journal of Criminal Justice, 41(3), 402-423.