The primary responsibility of a public safety officer is to protect and serve the citizens of the jurisdiction in which he or she works. Some officers work for local government agencies, while others work for large corporations that need officers to prevent crime. These professionals have previously worked in law enforcement and are frequently cross-trained to act as first responders in an emergency.
Most agencies that hire these officers prefer candidates with a college degree and require at least a high school diploma. Police training or completion of a basic law enforcement program is also required for this position. Physically fit and able to pass extensive background checks and psychological testing are required of the officer. Officers must also be able to solve problems, make logical decisions, and pay attention to details.
A public safety officer’s responsibilities include traffic enforcement and patrolling areas to help prevent criminal activity. Officers frequently cite drivers for speeding, intoxicated driving, and illegal parking. While on traffic patrol, the officer may be asked to assist other officers as needed.
A public safety officer’s other responsibilities include responding to emergencies such as fires, hostage situations, and car accidents. To control crowds, investigate the accident, and write incident reports, the officer collaborates with other emergency personnel. Many police departments train their officers in basic first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), and the use of medical resuscitators.
A public safety officer’s responsibilities also include making court appearances and testifying as the arresting officer. When a police officer issues a citation, the person who received it must either pay a fine or appear in court. If a person is arrested, he or she will be required to appear in court for a trial. The officer must appear in front of the judge and explain why the person was charged with a crime. If a public safety officer was the first to respond to an incident, he or she may be called to testify as a witness.
Officers who work at universities or large corporations, such as hospitals, must keep an eye on what is going on in the buildings, particularly in the lobbies and parking garages. A public safety officer’s job is to keep these facilities safe and secure for the people who work and go to school there. Officers are also responsible for enforcing local laws and regulations, such as issuing citations and arresting unruly individuals.