LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – An internal job satisfaction survey found a significant portion of Little Rock Police Department officers has a negative perception of the agency’s leadership.
The report was sent by the LRPD’s training division to the chiefs on April 20, six days before Chief Keith Humphrey sent a letter to city hall announcing his retirement.
The survey took in anonymous responses from 400 officers and sergeants as part of the department’s accreditation process and found that while those officers and sergeants have confidence in their immediate supervisors, they do not with members of the command staff.
Less than half of officers and sergeants responding to the survey said they feel proud to tell people they work for LRPD. The report suggested that sentiment likely stems from the negative public perception of law enforcement and negative issues specifically associated with the organization.
“There is a general perception that the Command Staff does not treat all officers fairly,” the report also noted.
About 64% of officers and sergeants answered that they believe who you know or who you are friends with is more important than job performance when it comes to being selected for a transfer.
The survey also found that if an officer or sergeant were to quit tomorrow, the primary reason they would give for their decision would be a perceived lack of leadership and support from top brass and above.
There are growing and immediate concerns about failing equipment.
“Non-availability of functioning equipment and an inability to obtain replacement equipment should be considered completely unacceptable,” the report detailed. “We routinely ask our officers to “do more with less” but then fail to provide them with basic tools needed to accomplish assigned tasks.”
The report also noted how it could take months for a replacement uniform to arrive.
Pay is also top of mind, especially with the Arkansas State Police increasing its starting salary for troopers, leaving officers in the capital city feeling under-compensated.
KARK 4 News reached out to the police department for comment about the survey and if there’s any correlation between the results shared in the report and Humphrey’s retirement. A department spokesperson said he’s not aware of the survey.
A request for comment from the mayor’s office was not immediately returned as of Friday afternoon.