|Opportunity & Competition
|Law Enforcement Training Requirements
|Job Hazards & Protections
|Median Income Growth for Law-Enforcement Officers (2022 vs. 2021)
2023's Best & Worst States to Be a Police Officer
WalletHub, May 8, 2023
Law enforcement is a career that is always in the public eye, whether for heroic reasons or scandal. Currently, our nation’s 800,000 law enforcement officers have even more of a spotlight than usual, though, amid high-profile police brutality cases. As a result, the Justice Department and some local police departments have made rule changes like banning chokeholds and no-knock warrants in some situations. President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address called for law enforcement officers to receive better training and to be held to higher standards.
While some police officers have not acted in accordance with their duties, plenty of others put their lives on the line to protect the public every day. Being a police officer is significantly more dangerous than many other occupations. Because of such risks, law-enforcement agencies must offer enough incentives to attract and retain officers. To start, there’s a $66,020 mean annual wage and typically a generous benefits package which can include retirement-contribution matches, tuition assistance, ample leave time, a take-home vehicle, and access to health and fitness facilities.
How well officers are compensated varies from place to place, though, as does the quality of their work environment. Officers are more likely to be attracted to police departments that steer clear of scandal and corruption and that are transparent with their communities.
In order to determine the best states in which to pursue a law-enforcement career, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 30 key indicators of police-friendliness. Their data set ranges from the median income for law-enforcement officers to police deaths per 1,000 officers to state and local police-protection expenses per capita….
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