A study to determine the effectiveness of sworn law enforcement officers' post-academy training and stress management skills
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Law enforcement officers face many stressors in both their occupational and personal lives. Not only do officers have to cope with a variety of societal problems but also must attempt to prevent these stressors from affecting their family lives. The purpose of this study was to assess the attitudes of sworn law enforcement personnel regarding the effectiveness of their post-academy training, with a focus on resulting stress management skills. Data were collected from 38 sworn law enforcement personnel from a major sheriffs office in Florida and from a major metropolitan police department in Texas. Analyses of the data indicated that law enforcement officers utilized a variety of coping skills, both positive and negative, to deal with the stress in their lives. Significant correlations and ANOVAs were obtained from the Stress Management Checklist and the Recent Life Change Questionnaire. In addition, a qualitative component included open-ended survey questions as well as a focus group. Implications for health education, health-related issues, and stress management training are discussed.