"In recent years, police officers from all over the country have been called up to serve in the Military Reserve and National Guard because their units were activated in the defense of our nation. Some officers have found themselves engaging in direct combat and experiencing the effects associated with combat. For others, the impact of deployment can, on its own, result in significant hardships. Lifestyle changes, family disruptions, increased anxiety, stress, and other outcomes can present challenges for officers returning to the workplace. Accordingly, many police agencies are faced with the tasks of preparing for the officers' return and helping them transition back into the agency and into their role as a police officer in the community. This report, Combat Deployment and the Returning Police Officer, reviews the issues concerning the reintegration of police officers who have been deployed in combat zones. Included are discussions of the psychological effects of combat deployment and methods used by police agencies to support a successful transition back to work. The report reviews strategies being used by four police departments to assist returning officers and their families, and offers recommendations for further study. The Office of Community Oriented Policing Services is proud to fund this project that addresses a topic of great import to law enforcement. We are grateful to all of those in the field who have dedicated themselves to supporting officers returning from deployment, and the Institute for Law and Justice for researching this important issue and compiling this report."
United States Department of Justice, COPS Program: http://www.cops.usdoj.gov/