Increasing incidents of crime against women as well a spike in cyber crimes where women are targetted, have brought the spotlight on need for more and better trained women law enforcement practitioners. Bridging this industry academia gap as well as offering scholarship grants for women law enforcement officers is a mission that Indian origin expert at Auburn University Montgomery, USA, is currently working on. Dr. Prit Kaur, who is currently Associate Professor of Criminal Justice, College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, at the university is behind The Division on Women & Crime (DWC’s) Pace Kaur Bahl Travel Grant for Women in Law Enforcement. This grant facilitates scholarship aligned with DWC’s larger goals by encouraging women in law enforcement to share their real world challenges encountered in the delivery of justice to women and girls. “After more than 62 years of women's entry into police in US and two decades of women's entry in India, women are only 2 per cent of the police with most concentrated at the lower police ranks. Consequently, for women police their jobs have remained extremely challenging, with only the nature of challenges varying from rank to rank among rookies and holders of leadership positions”, says Dr Prit, who recently presented a paper in this regard in the UN also.
The Pace Kaur Bahl Travel Grant is named after three powerful women who have provided economic, moral and social support by helping women and girls in critical life situations and teaching them survival skills.
Active duty women in law enforcement serving in the fields of policing from anywhere in the world can apply for this one-time travel grant up to a maximum amount of $2,000. Applications will be assessed based on an applicant’s personal statement, the originality of the research project, and its potential to inform research, practice or theory on gender, crime, and justice.
Dr Prit along with her two colleagues is currently working on two research projects in this field. The first one is to assess preparedness of women police stations in India and cyber units in police stations in USA, and the second one is on need for women police for effective handling of cyber crime and cyber victimisation. — TNS
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