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Social issues of Police Discretion

Uploaded by Thomas01 on Mar 19, 2004

The three stories I chose to write my paper on; are from pages 110 through 138 in Maynard-Moody and Musheno’s “Cops, Teachers, Counselors” book. They focus on the street level workers using their discretion to make decisions in their jobs. The stories are titled, “I’m Disabled but want to be an EMT”, “Cut the Power”, and “Ignoring Orders”. In this paper I will argue that street level workers use their discretion in ways that is not consistent with established rules while identifying different constraints operating on the workers and explain what the author’s mean with the reference to the three stories I have selected.
To begin, street level workers use their discretion in ways that shows the presence of moral reasoning rather than following established rules of which they are supposed to follow. For instance in the story “Ignoring Orders” the teacher in the story was supposed to have the mother, whose child is in the special needs program, sign a consent form to relinquish service. The teacher did not perform the task as she was supposed to because she did not feel that it was morally right. She instead sent in the paperwork without the mother’s signature, which allowed the child to remain in the program. The second story entitled “I’m Disabled but Want to be an EMT” is about a counselor who is contacted by a client who has a bad back and has decided to become an EMT. The counselor is asked to allow the client to take courses to become an EMT, but the counselors better judgment in the case is that someone with a bad back should not be an EMT. So the counselor tells the client that she will not authorize the training since it would more likely put the client at risk of further injury. The third story, “Cut the Power”, is about a police officer who is called out to an apartment complex on a loud music complaint. When the officer attempts to make contact with the subject who has his music playing too loud, the subject curses and ignores him. Finally, the officer gets tired of the situation and decides to turn off the power to the subject’s apartment. He then tells the subject, “I’ll tell you what. If I have to come back again, I’m going to kick the door...

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Uploaded by:   Thomas01

Date:   03/19/2004

Category:   Social Issues

Length:   9 pages (2,107 words)

Views:   1217

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