Agency policy on ethics is the document responsible for providing guidelines on the professional conduct of the department, in this case, New York Police Department, in which they shall commit to serving the public through an ethical manner. Ethical behavior is this case refers to actions to which are in line with societys definition of good values. As the Police Commissioner of the New York State Department, one is charged with the duty of ensuring professionalism and commitment within my department. It is under this obligation that the drafting of the agency policy on ethics shall need to be formulated under his supervision. The agency policy of ethics is formulated to ensure that the members of the department do not use their job as an excuse to act indecently and unprofessionally in the line of duty. It is for this reason that the department needs the policy of ethics.
Having an ethics policy in the department earns the loyalty of the public in the police service. As an agency made to serve the public the New York Police Department is dependent upon the loyalty of the general public to function efficiently. It also gives the members of the department a good reason to conduct themselves in an ethical manner. This provides a positive work environment for the department members. Developing positive relationships amongst themselves and with the community, they are meant to serve. The New York Police Department has been caught in some legal problems for the unprofessional conduct of their officers. Because of the lack of policy on ethics, the officers lacked some clear guidelines on how to conduct themselves in the line of duty. The policy of eliminates such room for unethical conduct in the department. Ethical behavior among the department members also makes them dependable. One knows what to expect from them when seeking for their help.
A commission shall draft the ethical policy made up of a member from each of the 12 taskforces currently operational in the department. As a result, each task force shall be required to donate two members to the new commission. The office 362A shall serve as the headquarters for the commission. The department also goes ahead to donate two vehicles, an SUV Chevrolet Suburban and a Ford Sedan for any commuting that shall need to be done by the members of the ethics commission. The Commission also has the right to interview any taskforce dealing in any case regarding the ethical conduct of the officers. References should make to the constitution and Police Service performance of Work agreement. The Police Commissioner shall appoint an Ethical Officer to oversee the implementation of these policies, but until then, the members of the commission shall appoint their officer who will be the leader of the commission and will report to the police commissioner directly (Payne, 1993).
The commission shall continue being operational for at least six months after the drafting of the ethical policy to oversee its implementation and also provide the Police Commissioner with time to appoint the Ethical Officer, after which the commission shall be disbanded. The commission shall also draft the procedure for the appointment of the ethical officer. The commission shall begin by establishing the necessary values of operation. This shall comprise of those values the department deems necessary for its operation. This shall be followed by the department code of ethics. These shall be based on the values of operation, and the Commission should ensure that they do not conflict with the values of operation. This shall include the boundary lines from which every officer should not cross in their duty. They do this by consulting the members of the various task force to get their opinions. The drafting shall also consist of the vision statement. This is the statement that outlines the goals of the department (Vicchio, 1999). From then on it will be up to the members to question their actions and ask themselves how they are helping the department achieve its goals by their actions.
The commission shall also draft the course for reporting unethical behavior by any employee of the department. This must involve the necessary channel of authority which must always involve the ethical officer. The drafting will also include the course of action for reporting unethical behavior. The draft should also include rewards for ethical behavior in the department. According to (Anand & Rosen, 2008), the draft should provide for measurement of the ethical behavior in the department. After the disbandment of the committee, the ethics officer will need a teamwork. Therefore the draft should provide a procedure for the appointment of this team.
To facilitate the adoption of these ethics in the department, the commission will initiate the training for the ethics exactly seven days after it has been signed by the Police Commissioner and other agency department chiefs. The training shall run for two months and shall involve all members of the department including other employees who are not members of the law enforcement such as the kitchen staff and cleaners. After completion of the training, every employee shall be required to sign the form of ethical conduct. The form contains the code of ethical conduct from the agency policy on ethics. The training for ethical conduct shall be integrated into the training of new recruits in the department for them to familiarize with the ethical conduct. After which they shall also sign the form of ethical conduct.
The training shall serve to equip the department members with the skills needed to always perform ethically even when under pressure. This trains them to always maintain ethical behavior even when faced with a dilemma. The training will also enable the department to identify the threats to ethical behavior in the agency. This is important for the officers to learn to anticipate threats to their ethics. The training will serve as a means of providing good feedback to the Commission on the effectiveness of the policy. It will also point out the ease of adaptability of the ethical policy. It will also boost the productivity of the members and keep them focused on the organizational goals. It provides them with the ground to practice ethical judgment in their workplace.
It is up to the commission to ensure compliance. They shall achieve this by establishing an ethical phone line to members of the public. Any unethical conduct by any member of the department can be reported directly to the ethical conduct commission via the phone line. The Commission will then proceed to investigate the allegations, and if proven true then the commission shall proceed with a course of action as indicated in the agency policy on ethics. On top of this, the incentives and rewards provided for in the agency policy would motivate the members of the department to adhere to the ethics. The commission shall be conducting a periodical evaluation of the adherence to the ethical program from time to time. They will always be writing a report and submitting it to the police commissioner regarding the progress they have made on the implementation of the ethical policy. The Commissioner shall then forward the report to his board for review (OMalley, 1997).
The continuous consultation with the members of the department might give the impression of a less serious situation. As a result, it is up to the members of the commission to ensure the members of the department take this issue seriously. Among the course of actions should include getting fired and indefinite suspension. The kick-starting of the training ceremony should be opened by a high-ranking official from the department of justice to ensure the rest of the department members take this seriously. If the adherence to ethical conduct is rewarded and the disregard has punished the members of the department will understand that the department is serious about ethical conduct. All members of the department shall need to conduct ethical training every year to ensure they remain on course. On top of it, the Police Commissioner shall outsource the ethics officer from another department to ensure the loyalty of the officer is to the job and not to his/her former colleagues.
Creation and implementation of agency policy on ethics are ultimately a continuous process. Over time some more codes of conduct shall be added to the policy. Other codes shall be reviewed. These policies are not meant to constrain the members of the department in their line of duty but instead, enhance their performance. It is in their best interest to have an ethics policy that guides their actions. Ethics policy is a necessity because as the watchmen of the people of New York, the department needs a guard.
Anand, V., & Rosen, C. C. (2008). The ethics of organizational secrets. Journal of Management Inquiry.
Payne, D. M. (1993). Ethics in Police Decisionmaking: Modeling the Corporate Method. FBI L. Enforcement Bull., 62, 5.
OMalley, T. (1997). J.Managing for Ethics: A Mandate for Administrators.. FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, 17-21.
Vicchio, S. (1999). Lecture on Police Integrity and Ethics. POST-Command College, San Marcos, California,(July 20).
Felkenes, G. T. (1984). Attitudes of police officers toward their professional ethics. Journal of Criminal Justice, 12(3), 211-220.
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