Morale in Criminal Justice Agencies

Morale in Criminal Justice Agencies
Duration: 60 Minutes
Module 1Module 1
Recorded on: 2021-05-18
Unit 1Slide Deck: Morale in Criminal Justice Agencies
Unit 2Transcript: Morale in Criminal Justice Agencies
Unit 3Workbook: Morale in Criminal Justice Agencies
Unit 4Recording: Morale in Criminal Justice Agencies

Dealing with critical incidents, people that could potentially endanger public safety, generally righting what is wrong with the community is no easy feat – this is what the criminal justice profession faces every day. Granted the hectic and complex conditions of the job, it is no surprise that criminal justice professionals are stressed. Add the political tension, demands to defund, and the public’s sentiments, and what you have is low morale in a profession that requires to be at their 100% to best serve the community.

This session’s instructor is Obed Magny, a founding member of the American Society of Evidence Based Policing with over 15 years of experience in law enforcement. He’s a National Institute of Justice LEADS Scholar Alum and a Policing Fellow at the Police Foundation.

Specifics of the discussion include:

  • Examining the current conditions of the criminal justice field and outlining the manifestations of low morale in this profession.
  • A rundown of the most common reasons for low morale which includes motivation, culture, and resources.
  • A deeper look into the state of crisis that the criminal justice system is currently going through and how this can further aggravate morale in the workforce.
  • Unpacking the reasons why people leave their jobs and how these factors into low morale.
  • A montage of reports that highlight the criminal justice profession’s retention and recruitment issues all over the country and the ways that law enforcement agencies are trying to entice recruits and transfers.
  • Understanding that money is a short-term motivator, and the ultimate retention strategy is to build morale by valuing employees.
  • The reasons for a criminal justice professional’s stress in the workplace.
  • A day in the life of a justice professional: The risk they’re exposed to in the streets, the seemingly thankless job, and the additional stress they experience within the organization.
  • The concept of justice and how those working within the justice system expect the same proportionality and fairness through organizational justice which then translates to them practicing procedural justice.
  • Characteristics of the criminal justice profession that contribute to low morale.
  • Concrete steps to improve morale within the field by:
    • Acknowledging the issue to be addressed and applying evidence-based practices to address these.
    • Keeping employees motivated and engaged by providing support and recognition, embracing innovation, and fostering a culture of psychological safety that sets them up for success.
    • Checking the temperature by conducting periodic surveys of the workforce’s thoughts and feelings on topics that impact them.
    • Resolving issues immediately and maximizing the people’s skills to solve problems that may arise.
    • Leveraging the benefits of coaching both to the coaches and the people they coach.
    • Demonstrating courage to make changes and push for innovations to get things done.
    • Fostering relationships within the organization to build trust.
    • Overcoming obstacles by focusing on purpose.

Obed clarified points during the Q&A about:

  • What engagement in the workplace means and looks like.
  • Maintaining good morale despite changes in the organization.
  • What systems and processes can leaders use to remain engaged.
  • How can an individual create change in an organization.
  • Providing support to first-line supervisors and managers.


Other Webinars with this Speaker:


Or click here to view and register for other upcoming ASEBP webinars on the JCH Platform.


Handouts and Resources


Audience Comments

  • “The presenter was great and this should inspire discussions.” — DETECTIVE
  • “The administration within our agency needs to listen to this presentation very carefully!” — Andrew
  • “Very knowledgeable presenter who explained things very well. Would love additional webinars from him!” — Brianna
  • “Realism! Thank you Dr. Magny!! ” — Carrie
  • “Showing how much you role (supervisor) your employees is essential to building morale. Engagement (recognize and reward achievement and failures) Is simple words listen to employees and listen to feedback…” — Charlene
  • “The details surrounding reasons why morale may be low and why people leave their job. GREAT webinar and GREAT speaker/presenter.” — Chris
  • “His wide span of knowledge and experience was impressive. He was engaging with the audience. Lots of ideas and very enthusiastic. Overall – AMAZING! APPARATUS!!” — Heather
  • “Dr. Magny always does an excellent job of presenting interesting information with a great blend of charisma.” — Marcus


Additional Resources
3 years ago
Job Satisfaction: An Evidence-Based Approach to Improving Morale and Reducing Stress with the Employees in Your Organization
In a profession inundated with public criticism, it takes perseverance and internal factors to remai […]
3 years ago
Motivation and Meaning for Law Enforcement Personnel
It takes one bad apple to spoil the bunch, one bad incident to forget all the good that’s been don […]
4 years ago
A Daily Drop of Corrosion: How the Daily Experiences in the Justice Professions Can Lead to Burnout
In 2018, CareerCast ranked policing as the fourth most stressful job in the US brought about by the […]
5 years ago
Creating an Organizational Culture of Wellness
Work-related stress is prevalent – it happens to people with 9 to 5 desk jobs, field workers, star […]