A police liaison officer is a police officer who is assigned to be the liaison between a particular community and the police departments. He is the resource person on law enforcement and public safety issues in certain environments. They also can offer support to victims of crime and build relationships in the community. The police make it clear that in the case of family liaison, an FLO is there as an investigator first, but they can point relatives in the direction of other support services, such as Victim Support.
A police liaison officer can be assigned to a family, community centre, or public housing project. One has to become a police officer first before being assigned as a police liaison officer. Each police force has its own requirements for becoming an officer, but there are some general requirements that apply almost anywhere.
- Skill level:
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Be at least 18 years old. In most police departments you have to be 18 years old before your application for joining the police force can be considered.
Liaison officers are usually accomplished and hold high-level degrees in their fields, such as a master's of or a Ph.D.
Be physically fit. You definitely will be required to pass a physical fitness examination, so you should work on developing strength and conditioning.
If you are planning on attending university, consider a degree in criminal justice, as this will help your application. While any degree will be helpful, a degree in criminal justice or criminal justice classes will familiarise you with some law enforcement issues.
Find out the specific requirements of the police force in your area or the location where you will like to work and start to meet them. The next step is to apply. Most police training is paid, so once you are accepted into the police academy you will be paid during the course of your training.
Cultivate the necessary skills required to become a liaison officer. Most police liaison officers work in schools as a positive law enforcement presence for the students. The liaison officer also teaches law enforcement- related classes and serves as a counsellor to and resource for students. You need to be comfortable with young people and with being a teacher and mentor to do this job. Volunteering at an after-school program for kids or being a camp counsellor is good experience to have.
Request to be assigned as a police liaison officer. Once you have graduated and are now a police officer, find out the requirements in your particular police department and ask to be assigned as a police liaison officer.
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