During the 1980’s perceptions and evaluations of policing by members of the public have featured prominently in both academic and policy arenas. This paper suggests that the data available on these issues has largely been gathered as if ‘the public’ and their images of policing were gender neutral. Through an analysis of a relatively unique data set (references written for prospectives applicants to a Southern Police Force) suggestions are made concerning the value of developing a more gender informed view of public images of policing. This paper particularly focusses on public images of prospective policewomen as compared with prospective policemen and illustrates how deeply rooted and conservative views of policewomen may be.
- Public images of policing