I would like to welcome you the new year and hope that you all found time to spend with your loved ones over the holidays.
We have two new members here in Region 5 that I would like to get a shout out to. Detective Deborah Ryan of Monroe Co. S. O. Florida, and Denise Womer, retired LEO now a Professor in Forensics who lives in the wonderful Orlando, Florida.
As you can see on the IAWP website there has been a lot of changes and members only section. I hope you all check it out and enjoy the updated new look. Carol Paterick, our web designer has done an amazing job!
I will share with you some tidbits about the first movement of women in policing that was documented by articles I found doing my research for my thesis on the history of women in policing. Women who were wanting to work as matrons (first steps into law enforcement) over women and children had to have a college degree or college training in certain areas of social work to be applicable for this job. I am talking the early 1900's! This was amazing for women to get an education back then, and usually it was the wives of men who were in the political areana that would allow the women to attend college since it was expensive and controversial at the same time. In 1921 the Boston school of Public Service offered a five month course of instruction with the purpose of preparing student for definite public and civil service positions. In 1924 the New York School of Social Work announced a program of instruction and field work intended to prepare properly qualified women to direct the work of policewomen. Lt. Mina C. Van Winkle, director of the Woman’s Bureau of the Metropolitan P.D. of the District of Columbia, and President of IAWP, cooperated with George Washington University to offer a series of social service courses including police organization and administration at the same time of the New York School of Social Work.The University of California was the first university in the U.S. to offer definite courses on the work of women police in its department of Criminology. It was organized and directed by Alice Stebbins Wells, the president of IAWP.
In general the movement for women police in this country has been sponsored by women’s groups and by private volunteer civic, state and national law enforcement, and social hygiene associations. Mrs. Marie Owen in 1893 a patrolman’s widow, was given an appointment in the Detective Bureau of the Police Department. The first recorded instance on information available of a women receiving police powers in order to deal effectively and directly with social conditions threatening the moral safety of young girls and women. In 1905 during the Lewis and Clark Exposition in Portland, Oregon. Mrs. Lola Baldwin, a travelers aid society secretary was given police powers and put in charge of protecting young girls and women during this exposition. In 1910 the city council passed an ordinance creating the position of police matron but which carried duties which today are considered to be those of women police. Mrs. Alice Stebbins Wells, in 1910 to her appointment as a police officer. In 1911 the position of women police officer in Los Angeles was placed under Civil Service, and October 1912 there were three women officers and three police matrons.
I hope you have found this information as insightful as I did. Thank you to the wonderful trailblazers who came before me to provide the job that I love so dearly!
Be safe out there ladies!