Local News

RTI studying stress on Durham police

Posted June 23

— The Durham Police Department is participating in a first-of-its-kind study to understand the stress of being a police officer.

The study being conducted by RTI International can help understand officer stress and what triggers it, Police Chief C.J. Davis said.

Three Durham officers are wearing body sensors during their shifts so researchers can track when stress levels are highest and what might be causing it.

"This has been a very, very good study. Three officers – very small sampling – but enough for us to open our eyes and say, 'Hey, we need to stop thinking about all of our officers and lumping them into one bucket,'" Davis said.

What stresses some officers might not register with others, she said.

Existing research has shown that stress can hinder job performance and could make people more prone to violence.

Davis said no changes will be made in the department until RTI completes more research.

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