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DALLAS -- Many Dallas police officers aren't happy with the current state of the department, according to the result of a morale survey released Thursday by the Dallas Police Association.

Eighty percent of the 1,279 officers who responded to the survey rated their morale as low or the lowest it's ever been.

'It's disturbing,' said Dallas Police Association President Ron Pinkston. 'It shows that morale is devastatingly low, and that's going to have an effect on how they are serving the citizens of Dallas. It's lower than I even I thought it would be.'

Dallas Police Chief David Brown, who has headed the 3,500-officer department for four years, has not yet responded to a request for comment.

The survey found, among other things, that:

  • 71 percent believed that they are not allowed to perform police duties that residents expect.
  • 87 percent felt they do not have the support of the command staff to do the job in the manner they've been charged.
  • 78 percent would not recommend DPD to other potential law enforcement candidates.
  • 54 percent were not satisfied with their job.

Many officers have described a general dissatisfaction with the direction of the department.

Dallas police officers have been frustrated by the department's handling of two controversial police shootings, which ultimately resulted in the firing of the officers and their indictment. Officers have also been upset by policies that say makes it difficult to do their jobs, such as the foot chase policy. More recently, Brown has been engaged in a long-running battle with the DPA over management of the Dallas police academy.

Pinkston said he's committed to working with the department's management to find solutions and to improve morale.

The confidential, online morale survey was conducted by Votenet Solutions.

E-mail teiserer@wfaa.com

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