Americans’ trust in police average for developed countries
Despite scandal and protest, overall, it appears Americans’ trust in local law enforcement officers remains within the average for wealthy, democratic countries.
According to a recent Gallup poll, when compared with residents of generally high-income, democratic countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Americans’ confidence in local police falls in the middle of the group.
Among the 34 OECD member nations, surveyed between 2013 and 2014, a median of 74 percent of residents said they had confidence in local police. In the U.S., where the question was asked in December 2013, the figure stood at 78 percent. Gallup reports it is possible this number might have changed with recent occurrences, but this figure has historically remained stable – within the 78 to 81 percent range – since 2005.
Gallup found that, in several OECD countries, including the U.S., residents’ confidence in their local police force has a corresponsing relationship with relative affluence. Residents with more wealth tend to be more confident in police forces’ abilities and tactics than do residents who are poor.
These conclusions were reached based on telephone interviews of approximately 1,000 adults in each country except Mexico, where interviews were conducted in person. All surveys were conducted between April 2013 and October 2014.
For more information on this data and what it means, watch the video below.