UU Police Gender Descrimination

By By [email protected]

By [email protected]

April 4th, 2005

Dear Editor:

I understand that the University of Utah Police Department is hiring again. Of course, they really have no choice, what with the department having lost such a high number of experienced officers during the last 18 months. What could be the problem? For a few it might be money, however, for most it was because of the hostile and oppressive environment. I left the University of Utah Police Department in December 2003 after 12 years. I left because of severe discrimination and gender bias at the hands of police command staff. To make things worse, the University of Utah administration refuses to address or even acknowledge that there is a problem. I was one of many who were targets of discrimination, and retaliation. The discrimination was because we are women. The retaliation was because we had the guts to stand up to an autocracy full of tyrants. The discrimination and retaliation charges are being “investigated” by the Utah Labor Commission. I suppose a more descriptive term would be that the charges of discrimination are “in the hands of” the Utah Labor Commission … and have been since 2002. Would it surprise you to find out that the Utah Labor Commission has done nothing about the charges for over two years? I must admit that I too had a large caseload when I was doing police investigations, but I never took over two years just to start an investigation. I’d like to warn any women who may be thinking about applying for a job at the UUPD. Please, rethink the idea very carefully. Women police officers are not of any significant worth to UUPD command staff. At least it seems that way, judging from how they treat women. They do not allow them to advance in training, and frequently don’t allow them to participate in special duties, i.e. bike patrol, motorcycles, RAD simulations etc. At the UUPD, most special duties are strictly male roles. Ever since Chief Wayne Shepherd left the department in 1996, women haven’t had much of a chance to improve themselves at the UUPD because most of the command staff, as well as some other supervisors won’t permit it. Nevertheless, don’t take my word for it; ask the many women who have left the stagnant, dictatorial environment. Better yet, you could ask the two who are still there, if they weren’t afraid of retaliation from a few obsolete administrators. I personally don’t know much about UUPD’s newest Chief of Police, but the word is that things haven’t changed much. Therefore … to the women interested in law enforcement, go anywhere but UUPD. In addition, to any Utah Attorney’s interested in joining our coming class action lawsuit, please, let me know. I can be reached at:

[email protected] Pearson-Buckmiller Retired UUPD Police Officer