Occupational stress among police personnel in India
*Correspondence: G Ragesh, PhD Scholar, Department of Psychiatric Social Work, Dr MV Govindaswamy Centre, National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS), Bengaluru-560029, Karnataka, India. firstname.lastname@example.org
Occupational stress and associated physical and mental health related issues are not addressed in Indian police personnel with adequate importance.
Cross-sectional survey was conducted among police personnel (both male and female) in Calicut urban police district, Kerala state, India. Police personnel from all designations (ranks), except from the all India services (Indian Police Service) were included in the study. Data were collected using a specifically designed datasheet covering socio-demographic profile, physical and mental health related details which was prepared by researchers. Occupational stress was measured using Operational Police Stress Questionnaire (PSQ-OP) and Organisational Police Stress Questionnaire (PSQ-ORG).
The study found that both operational and organisational stress was significant among the police officers. Organisational stress was experienced in moderate level by 68% and in high level by 14%. Operational stress scores were in the moderate range in 67% and in high range in 16.5%. The younger age group (21–35 years) and lower level rank police personnel had higher stress. Stress was higher among female police personnel compared to males. While 23% of them had been diagnosed with physical illnesses, a significant four per cent of them with mental illness, and 29% of them reported substance abuse.
The results point to the high level of stress among Indian police personnel and the need for urgent interventions from the government to address the occupational stress.
Law Enforcement Officers, Mental Health, Substance Abuse.