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The RCMP: Why Do I Stay?

Sep 14

What is the matter with me?  Why do I continue to allow this organization to treat me like this?  I should have left long ago.  The Force is in a “death spiral”; it is ethically challenged and run by a group of narrow minded and self absorbed senior executives.  My values are at odds with its archaic corporate culture.  I am being marginalized by senior management; and my stress level is “through the roof”.  I have probably burned my bridges and have no evidence that the RCMP will ever recognize my complaints or create agile 21st century HR processes.  What is the matter with me?

I feel like I’m stuck.  On one hand, I know the “outfit” is not going to look after me, and on the other I’m paralyzed by the thought of change.  I keep hoping things will improve but realize that if nothing changes, nothing changes.  What am I sacrificing by enabling this abuse?  Do I think this little of myself?  I’ve just got to get my head around the fact that I have made a choice to subject myself to this ongoing mistreatment.  I have to recognize that I am mistaken if I think there is no other option.  I am in control and can put an end to this misery whenever I choose to.  There is life without the RCMP.

Do I stay because I’m afraid of letting others down?  Am I afraid that others may judge me; call me a “quitter”?  That’s crazy, I’m not a mind reader.  Does the thought of telling someone that I quit seem embarrassing to me?  I guess I should just accept that some people will disagree with me and those who care about me will understand.

I remember reading somewhere that the freedom to quit is what distinguishes employment from slavery.  If I’m afraid to quit the Force because of some now tarnished childhood dream, or economic necessity, then they can brutalize me and exploit me and get away with it.  If I am free to walk away then the RCMP must treat me well or they will lose their investment in me (and many others!).

Do I stay because I’m afraid to make a choice?  Do I hesitate to make the decision to leave because then I must bear the responsibility of the decision I made?  I know it’s much easier for me to let others make my decisions for me because then I don’t have to assume the responsibility of having made a wrong decision.

Am I refusing to take control of my life because I see that task as hard work?  Am I overwhelmed by the choices I have before me?  But I make hundreds of my own decisions every day.  I know I can’t control everything, but I’m not completely powerless either.  I can influence the course of my life; and I can always choose my response to any circumstance.  I think it takes more of my energy to deny the control I have than to exercise it.  To play powerless like this sacrifices my integrity; I dishonour myself, and compromise my values.

Do I stay because I think that poorly of myself?  Do I think I deserve this?  I make a lot of noise about wanting things to change in the RCMP, but deep down do I believe I’m getting what I deserve?  Has my self esteem been so damaged by the mistreatment I have received that I believe I don’t deserve better?  Am I at the point where I believe there must have been something wrong with me to be targeted like this?  I felt so much better about myself when I was in control of my own life and not letting someone else work me like a puppet.

Do I stay because I need an excuse to be angry?  Does living this misery day in and day out give me a way to express my sense of injustice?  Maybe my feeling of being betrayed, my disappointment, or my impotence allows me to feel justified in my endless anger.  I do feel good when I have a chance to “unload” on the Force – but it never lasts.  I’m at the point where all I really have is my anger; it is consuming me.  I’m more focused on why I can’t leave, than how I can.

Do I stay because I believe a miracle will happen?  Do I believe someone, or something, else is going to present me with a solution?  Stagnating like this is destroying other parts of my life; my relationships; my health; my enjoyment of life.  How long will I wait for this miracle?  I’m beginning to think this situation has no satisfying solution.  I need to learn to stand up for myself and say “enough”.  I believe that if I put an end to this, I will have broken an unhealthy pattern that has been going on between me and my dysfunctional employer.  I need to restore my sense of self-efficacy.  I need to take my power back.

Do I stay because I see leaving as a defeat?  Am I afraid others will view me as a “loser”?  Will I view myself as a “loser”?  It’s my perception that counts most, and I choose to view leaving as a retreat rather than a defeat.  A retreat is not a bad response in the face of overwhelming odds; most importantly I’ll survive, and then, if it’s to my advantage, I could find some high ground and counterattack.

Most people think of General George Washington as a great military leader who never lost a battle.  Actually, during the American Revolution, save for the occasional victory, Washington survived by knowing how to “cut and run”.  The future President mastered the use of defeat and orderly retreat for strategic purposes.  He learned that the seemingly invincible British Redcoats could be neutralized by a smaller and lighter force.  Moreover, he learned how to execute a strategic retreat just at the right moment; this became his signature move.  And even though during the early days of the war he was losing battles all over the countryside, he managed to save his army from total defeat.  In other words, Washington always survived to fight another day.  Will I?  Will you?

Cst. M Maintienledroit

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From → Complaints, RCMP, Stress

16 Comments
  1. Bob Perry permalink

    No doubt the answers to those questions are uniquely different and fraught with degrees of difficulty for resolution for each members faced with the prospect of staying or leaving the RCMP. Having gone through that decision making process myself I found William Bridges book, Transitions making sense of life’s changes, may assist in bringing additional clarity to some of those questions.

    He notes that the key-differentiating factor between change and transition resides in the fact that “changes are driven to reach a goal, transitions start by letting go of what no longer fits or is adequate to the life stage you are in”. (Bridges, 2004, p.128).

    Some highlighted insights include (Bridges, 2004):

    • We transition into something not just transition from something.
    • Every transition begins with an ending… we have to let go of the old thing before we can pick up on the new one – not just outwardly but inwardly where we keep our connections to people and places that act as definitions of who we are.
    • Two questions to ask yourself whenever you are in transition:
    1) What is it time to let go of in my own life right now? – Finding out what it is time to let go of often provides the way to initiate a transition meaningfully,
    2) What is standing backstage, in the wings of my life, waiting to make an entrance?

    The decision to stay or to leave is nothing short of courageous given the uncertainties that exist on both sides of that question.

    Source: Bridges, W. (2004). Transitions making sense of life’s changes (2nd ed.)

  2. Anonymous permalink

    Anonymous

    I understand what both of you are saying. I have a question. How does one move forward and put something that is so negatively life changing and profound that happened to them in their life, behind them?

    My quandary is this! Although I did nothing wrong other than stand up to the wrong doings of my employer. I was targeted for destruction and my 25 plus years with the RCMP was utterly destroyed. I complained and the way in which my complaint was handled has negatively assisted in where I am emotionally today. I look at it this way. They, the RCMP did this to me. My life has been turned upside down. Everything that I believed to be good about the RCMP was wrong. Personally, I want to leave this upside down organization in the worst way. Unfortunately, I truly believe that I will not be able to move forward until one of two things occur.

    1. The RCMP admits what it has done to me and agrees to let me retire with the same values that I joined with, or

    2. The RCMP fires me, medical’s me out, or tells me to go pound sand without dealing with any of my complaints.

    As I see it, there are only two options that they have. If it takes until I die of old age, then so be it. I can not and will not let them get away with what they have done to me professionally and personally. If I become more sick because of this, then that is the price that I am willing to pay. Yes, I know that this is not a healthy way of dealing with this issue, however it is who I am. I have never cut and run from a fight and I do not intend to start now.

    I will stand my ground, come what may.

    • Cst. M. Maintienledroit permalink

      Bonjour Anonymous,
      When you posed your question about putting “something that is so negatively life changing and profound” as the treatment you received from the RCMP behind you, I assumed that I was one of those you were asking. With the greatest of respect for you and your situation, I will not tell you what you should do; instead, I will share with you what I do. Take what you will and discard the rest.

      First, I accept that “all is mind alone”…….your mind is a place of it’s own and can make a heaven of hell, or a hell of heaven. Each day before my feet hit the floor I remind myself that there is a tomorrow undoubtedly coming, when I will not be here. This alternative to any misery I may be dealing with, suddenly puts everything in perspective.

      Second, I put things in perspective by recalling the words of Michelle Knight in her Victim Impact Statement given on August 1, 2013 at the sentencing of her torturer Ariel Castro. I keep these words in my mind as a mother keeps the image of her lost child in hers. “LIFE IS TOUGH, AND I AM TOUGHER”. If she can say this after what she has been through, I have nothing to compare.

      Cst. M. Maintienledroit

  3. DJ Motorcop permalink

    I blame my police experiences and my life experiences combined for attributing to my anxiety, PTSD and depression. My family pushed me into counselling six and a half years ago and for three years I lived day by day counting down the last five years of my career. But after three years of robbing Peter to pay Paul the bill came due and I spiralled out of control. Suicidal depressed anxious paranoid and homocidal, my wife stepped in and pulled me off the road and home. Calls to health services got emergency meetings with health care providers and a date with psychiatry. Two years of ODS and intense treatment got me to a point where I asked for a medical discharge and left the force with 36 years of combined Municipal/ RCMP police service. Now 16 months later I see with clarity that the RCMP did not make me ill it was life as a cop, member, LEO, enforcer pig, popo, heat, 50 or any other moniker hung on us by society. The force is not equipped to deal with modern day policing and the perils it brings they are sadly understaffed and entrenched in the 19th century trying to be the fabled mythical force they once were. So my advice, get a treatment plan in place heal grow learn and then get the hell out while you still have life left to live!

  4. Anonymous permalink

    This is an excellent article. I am sure many have read it and reflected on how close this hits home to their own personal situation.

    DJ Motorcop: I read your response and was very intrigued by what you had to say. I have always wonder what happens to those after retirement. Do these “ill feelings” stay with you afterwards or is this just a result of the work we do. I have spoken to many great fellow members who share many of the same views that were discussed in this response. This one really hit home for me.

    Depression, anxiety, PTSD are all too often felt by many and spoken about by few. This could potentially turn into a very stimulating discussion. Mike Webster do you have any comments on this? Any words of advise? Anything for new members on how to deal with 24 years of this emotional roller coaster.

    • Hello Anonymous,
      Thank you for your insightful comment and question. You asked if I have any comments on “this”. I’m not sure which part of your comment you were referring to. I’ll take a chance and respond to, “Anything for new members on how to deal with 24 years of this emotional roller coaster?”
      First, new members should understand that human beings are reward (reinforcement) burning organisms. When we are being rewarded by our jobs, or our relationships for example, we tend to have better moods, better self images, more energy, and more resilience. When a critical source of reward, like a job or a relationship, fails to reinforce us we need alternate sources to fall back on to maintain mental balance. The take-away on this is, to be able to accomodate oneself to difficult and demanding life experiences one needs to have a variety of sources of reward in one’s life to fall back on. Put simply this means “get a life”, policing is only a job, no more or no less than any other!
      Second, young “Dudley Do-right” needs to grasp that he is not a policeman. Yes, I understand that on a relative level we identify ourselves as psychologists, plumbers, police persons etc. However, on an absolute level I am not what I do! If I were, I would be capable of nothing else. To believe “I am a policeman” suggests you always were, are presently, and always will be. You likely had a job (or two) before you became a policeman and may have another after you leave policing. Policing is only something you do. What you really are, always have been, and always will be is a human being. The take-away here is that the more your identity is tied to what you do, when you leave it, you lose who you are. I’m not sure of the most recent numbers but they used to go something like this: average age of a policeperson’s death – 57 years; and 18 months after retirement. Now what do you suppose that is all about? I assure you, policing, even for the RCMP, is only a job, no more important nor less important than any other job!
      I hope these opinions assist not only new members but others as well.
      Dr. Mike Webster, R. Psych.

      • Anonymous permalink

        It’s a good post doc but I must ask a question. You mention to ‘get a life’ outside your workplace and through life, up until joining the force, I had one. What I found was all the stressors of the force started creeping into what you call ‘alternate sources’ I fell back on that I always had….”that life” which seemed to be taken away by them. This has never happened through my working career anywhere else but the force that seemed to have that ability to ‘sap me of that outside life’ of mine. I wonder how the force had this ability that no other employer of mine had in my life (other than their controlling & dehumanizing nature)? Anyways, just my thought for now.

  5. Anonymous permalink

    Dear Anonymous

    With regards to your question: “Do these ill feelings stay with you after retirement”

    This is my opinion only. I am not a member but a spouse of a member. This is what I can offer based on what I have witnessed of friends that were once in the Force who chose to leave; not because it was the right time for them but because they were no longer willing to fight the losing battle with management (grievances not being dealt with etc). They simply decided that they were done with putting up with the BS.
    From my perspective those that have not had any resolution to their complaints and decided to leave is that they have never been able to move forward. They are bitter, negative, stuck, and seem to still be living in the past.
    Now some may say this depends on an individual and rightly so, however it is my opinion that any significant life altering event, closure is an important part of moving forward. The umbilical cord is never cut.
    It could simply be my perception however I truly believe that if an individual chooses to simply “give in” you will be forever scarred.

    • Anonymous permalink

      Sometimes I don’t think the issue can be simply pointed to ‘giving in’ and is just not that easy to make this statement at a 30,000 foot level without looking at specifics. These ill feelings can stay with you if you leave (even prior to retirement depending on how you were treated and what level of brutality was directed at the person). The RCMP orchestrate their processes and operations to never assist you with resolving harassment or other issues making it impossible to cut the umbilical cord. Sometimes the choice has to be to ‘leave’ for better piece of mind, than ‘giving in’ as this implies some level of ego (another force quality) that if you do ‘win’ it’s at a greater loss (maybe your health, spirit, or other disorders) so you have to ask yourself what you consider tangibly a win? I don’t believe winning a harassment suit solves the issue as internally I’ve seen these things continue afterwards. A civil suit would be more of a win, but then you have to ask yourself what career you have left in the force? How do you know you’ll still get promotions, career advancement, if others working behind the scenes attempt to ruin your career. Some do…some don’t…it’s a toss up and just too many schemes operating in the background to know what to do. Just my thought on it.

  6. Anonymous permalink

    Cst. Mainteinledroit,

    We are living what you have written. By we I include our children and all of their questions which mirror ours and yours. We do not have the answers as they change from day to day, and often hour to hour.

    What struck me most when reading your letter is how very similar your situation ( and ours as well as many others) is in comparison with the “cycle of violence” that we see in dysfunctional and abusive relationships. How do we advise those victims? No matter what we say or do for them, until they are ready to move on and make the choice, they continue to be victimized. As with the victim of violence, we have so many reasons to leave but are unable to take the steps necessary. Until we are ready. We will all get to where we need to be in our own time.

    What this Force has done to us will always be a part of us, it has shaped some of who we are. However, we are better, stronger, more courageous. We have character and integrity and belief in what is right. We have each other and together we have chosen to stand our ground and fight for what we believe in.

    I wish you all the best as you answer your own questions and follow the path that will set you free, no matter which one that might be. I hope you have a strong support system within your family as well as your friends. I hope some of your supports are fellow Members, and I hope some are not.

    Here’s to you …

    • Anonymous permalink

      Anonymous Joe,

      I completely agree with you Maintenledroit. I’m a former member who left the force for the same reasons you are mentioning. The ArseCMP culture, incorporates low culture that’s all about ‘image’ and ‘zero substance’. I would have to add that the FarceCMP, has an ability to really shit on every aspect of a person’s psychology and values. While Mike Webster indicates having a life ‘outside’ of work (and i do agree with this), the problem lays in that the ArseCMP ‘own you’ 24/7 under the RCMP Act. The anxiety brought on by this organization seeps heavily into your personal life and as time progresses, this anxiety takes you buy storm, even in your personal life. Even when out with friends in a social setting, the anxiety of knowing you have to go back the next morning really keeps your mind in a self-defensive mold to really prepare psychologically for the ‘abuse’ you’ll receive the next day in your toxic work environment. So your free time is never really free time as this seeps into your personal life, simply because you know what’s ‘in store’ for you at work the next day that you CAN NOT ESCAPE as you have to prepare psychologically for this everyday, to build that cocoon around you, so as to keep sane as best you can. I eventually found a better employer so i didn’t always have to be surrounded by jack-offs trying to ruin me, or everyone else around me fired as though it were a game – like Monopoly. You land on ‘do not pass go…do not collect $200’, but instead this square says ‘terminated’. It’s a brow-raiser to see how many angles of approach this outfit has to screw people. That’s why most, if not all, these RMs/CMs/PSEs live in fear.

      Then you have to ask yourself, after 10 years service….”can i put up with this another 20-25 years? Is it worth it? How marketable are my skills after 10 years in this outfit or am i trapped”? You need to have the confidence to look beyond the ArseCMP’s puked-out factory of hype. “The mountie’s always get their man”, “together we’re strong..together we stand”, or “no man is above the law”, whatever breathless hyperbole the sycophantic outfit uses at that moment is just another sham that emanates throughout this environment.

      That being said, “Maintainledroit” i do wish you the best in your future endeavours, and there is life and much..much better employers out there, more so than beyond the smoke-and-mirrors shit hole outfit the FarceCMP has become.

  7. Anonymous permalink

    How do we break free ? Please read the following article from policeone.com

    http://www.policeone.com/police/community/articles/6457773-Are-you-a-law-enforcement-hostage-How-to-break-free/

    Are you a ‘law enforcement hostage’? How to break free.

    The authoritarian culture in many departments needs to be examined – and dismantled

    By Fredinal “Fred” Rogers and Deborah K. Lewis
    PoliceOne Members

    Imagine being held hostage for seven thousand three hundred days, snatched from your home and family, while thinking your hostage-taker was a friend. Day in and day out, you and several other hostages remained under observation and locked away for eight hours a day.

    Some days, you are permitted an hour to yourself where you are allowed to eat, possibly outside of your cell. Each day, you are told what to do, when to do it, how to do it, and where it will be done. Deviations from the rules are met with punishment as you mark the wall counting the day until freedom arrives.

    Sound familiar? For many in the law enforcement profession, struggling to complete 20 years of service, this scenario is all too real. We refer to this condition as the Law Enforcement Hostage Mentality (LEHM).

    Assessing Conditions
    LEHM refers to the state of mind of officers who feel handcuffed to their organization until they are retirement eligible. In most police departments, that hostage situation begins after the officer has gone beyond the point of no return — leaving the department is no longer an economically feasible or socially acceptable decision. To fully understand LEHM, law enforcement leadership must recognize this organizational mindset and take steps to shift the paradigm before it results in negative consequences.

    What conditions support the development of the LEHM? Three primary conditions are leadership style, organizational culture, and organizational structure (systems, policies, and procedures.)

    Traditionally, law enforcement departments are command and control organizations that utilize an authoritarian leadership style where leaders exercise complete control of the organization with little or no input from the workforce. In this environment, the workforce is conditioned to conform and not question decisions. This lack of input and involvement in daily work creates tension between the employee and the organization.

    Authoritarian leadership reduces opportunities for innovative problem solving, thereby reducing employee engagement. Instead of employees making decisions and solving problems within their scope of responsibility, LEHM would indicate they surrender decision-making to the authoritarian leader. By thwarting employees’ need for inclusion and input, organizations allow feelings of inadequacy, helplessness, and discontent to emerge and enable LEHM to thrive.

    Unhealthy Culture
    In law enforcement, cultural indoctrination begins during training at the police academy and is reinforced throughout the employment tenure through storytelling, accepted practices, and personal experiences that dictate officer behavior and interactions.

    Culture defines an officer’s role as a member in the group and outlines the boundaries in which they can and should behave. When the organizational culture is negative or toxic, a breeding ground for discontent and malaise emerges and can contribute to the development of LEHM. LEHM then thrives when departments fail to examine the culture and identify the LEHM enablers at the organizational, managerial, and individual levels.

    Law enforcement agencies are systems, much like the human body. Just as all of the organs of the human body must work together to ensure a healthy body, so too must departmental systems and policies to ensure a healthy organization. Law enforcement agencies rely heavily on an organizational structure that promotes conformity and reduces uncertainty. This is intended to make things more predictable for officers and minimize the need for independent thinking. While there is value in ensuring the consistent application of policies, systems that do not offer opportunities to exercise autonomy fall to a state where officer morale, motivation, and discretionary effort quickly wane.

    In addition, when policies and procedures are unnecessarily rigid, problems that require some degree of innovation are resigned to inflexible solutions that create more disruption than the original problem. In the end, bad policies block organizational arteries, cause distress to the system, and create hostages in blocked areas as employees are cut off from the mainstream and do not get the guidance, support, and information needed to sustain maximum performance. By the time the department realizes there is a blockage, LEHM has spread throughout the organization.

    Understanding the Behavior
    So, why stay? Employees depend on a steady income and cannot absorb any reduction in pay. While this has always been true for entry-level employees, the ongoing housing market and financial crisis has made it a reality for employees at all levels of the organization.

    Typically, law enforcement officers live off a steady diet of overtime. However, as federal, state, and local municipalities struggle to balance budgets, law enforcement salaries have been stagnant and positions are abolished or left unfilled.

    Since these challenges are prevalent at every level, it supports the development of the LEHM as officers feel they would get little relief by moving outside the profession or to another law enforcement agency.

    Addressing the Challenges

    Responding to LEHM is not as simple as asking employees, “Do you feel like a hostage?” Nor is it about rescuing employees from LEHM. Rather, it is about organizational leaders adopting targeted strategies to reach the ultimate goal of engaged employees who view themselves as volunteers rather than hostages. Department leadership should consider the “4 E” approach:

    Examine the Organizational Culture: Assess organizational strategy and ensure cultural strengths are maximized to engage employees and minimize resistance. Understand that a culture based on giving orders does not relieve the department of its responsibility to properly train, mentor, and coach employees.
    Embrace Servant Leadership: Adopt the servant leadership style and tend to the emotional and physical well-being of employees. Employees who feel heard, understood, and supported are more closely aligned to organizational efforts. This is the fundamental shift in mindset that fosters true attitudinal change in people and builds effective relationships.
    Engage in Effective Dialogue: Effective dialogue gives the leader an opportunity to understand the officer’s expectations and create a more beneficial relationship that balances personal interests and organizational necessities. The more dialogue, the more openness occurs and the more trust is established.
    Encourage Autonomy: Identify areas where officers can get more autonomy and participate in the decisions affecting when and how work is done. By ensuring officers understand departmental policies and the areas where discernment should be exercised, job enrichment and job satisfaction increases.
    Law enforcement departments must make officer engagement a priority to reduce the likelihood of LEHM developing and spreading throughout the organization. The consequences are illustrated by our version of a famous Cherokee parable.

    Nurture Engagement
    An old chief was teaching his tribal elders about leadership. “A fight is going on inside most organizations,” he said to the elders.

    “It is an ongoing fight, and it is between two cultures. One culture is oppressive and breeds anger, discontent, low engagement, poor morale, conformity, low trust, and law enforcement hostage mentality. The other organizational culture is engaging – it promotes innovation, creativity, productivity, decision-making, collaboration, and trust. This same fight is going on inside all organizations – and inside every leader, too.”

    The elders thought about it for a minute, and then one asked the Chief, “Which culture will win?”

    The old chief simply replied, “The one you nurture.”

  8. Stewart Robertson permalink

    Lots of good and very valid experiences have been shared here, we all know a very large number more out of fear for retaliation and career destruction. the experiences shared in the Lower Mainland Member’s Support Group are eerily similar, not only in behaviours experienced but the number of times a senior management member is inserted and the unchecked corruption and cover up begins.

    As for myself, why do I stay? It is the reason as to why I serve, my oath taken on the day I engaged into the RCMP. I stay to serve my country and my fellow citizens , my neighbours, friends, strangers, visitors to our country. It is an oath I (as many of my colleagues) take great care and pride in with each and every day we stand on guard for our country and fellow citizens in upholding our values and way of life, I will not dignify the ongoing unattended problems with mention as I am focusing on why I serve.

    on my day of engagement I was offered an oath to take to become a member of the RCMP, this oath of office I stick to as it guides me through my duties and responsibilities each and every day.

    The RCMP Oath of Office is as follows;

    “do you solemnly swear that you will faithfully, diligently and. Impartially execute and perform the duties required of you as a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and will well and truly obey and perform all lawful orders and instructions that you receive, without fear, favor or affection of or towards any person, so help you God?”

    My answer was, “I do so swear”.

    This is why I stay, this is why I serve. I serve Canada, her citizens, guests, my fellow members et al. It is that simple.

    Stewart Robertson
    chair
    Lower Mainland Member’s Support Group

    • Anonymous permalink

      Thanks for that Stewart. I needed reminding.

      • Damaged goods permalink

        I’m a civilian member of the force and have 10 years of service. The toxic environment doesn’t stop with regular members. It has deeply been felt through all categories of employees and the same politics that trouble RMs is strongly felt in the CM category.

        I have never experienced such a stressful, uncaring, uncompassionate, selfish, egotistical, arrogant, disrespectful environment in my life. I chose to join the RCMP to be part of something special. Working there has made me mentally ill and aside from stress causing chronic pain my current role has damaged my body significantly. I’ve filled out 3414s with no response, the SRRs could care less, and now our category is being expelled from the force.

        I attempted to become an auxiliary – conflict of interest (ever changing policy) door slammed in my face. Applied to convert to an RM to stand a fair chance in promotions – differed on a technicality after 2 years of waiting and having to redo the entire application process even though CMs aren’t supposed to compete against the public. Decided to settle down with my wife. On the day of receiving our keys for our beautiful new home the recruiters call and want me at depot in 2 weeks. Too little too late. I was willing to die for this organization.

        My entire experience with the force has been a struggle. The 99% sit on their ass while the 1%ers do all the work. If you speak up you ate chastized and told no one can be as perfect as you.

        After a complete mental breakdown that left me between this world and another I was able to get a few weeks off. After returning I’ve tried working with management, SRRs, and outside entities to improve our working conditions and to improve morale.

        I’ve finally got an offer for a new job outside of the force and while not religious I’m praying to God I’ll be discharged from the force shortly. I miss my life and cannot wait to detach from this hellhole. I’ve met thousands of members over my career and I can barely count on one hand those who actually do it all over again.

        I hope I can take some time in between to reflect on life and heal some of these deep wounds. God speed my friends. I know your pain and suffering all too well.

    • anonymous permalink

      Hello Stewart,

      You make some great points as to why you stay, serve to the best of your abilities, and maintaining your oath. I have no doubt you are a sincere individual who does what he can with limited vested powers (as most members are afflicted by courtesy of senior mgmt) to help your members’ support group and beyond.

      As a former member, i had taken this oath as well, at a time, where i was very ‘green’ in the outfit, with perceived grandeurs of what was to unfold in a new career with the force. As years went by, i only experienced corruption, collusion, blatant favouritism, excessive abuse, and mostly saw disparate RCMP core values – they really don’t exist.

      Maybe once upon a time, the force had core values, but i’ve never seen them. While i do respect the ‘oath’ “you choose” to honor and maintain to the best of your abilities….i see this oath today as nothing more than an obsolete statement. There are co-dependent relationships necessary between members and RCMP senior management coupled with support coming from a top-down approach to make this ‘oath’ valid or even reliable. Members can not maintain oath without the proper senior mgmt buy-in, otherwise it’s diluted to something not worth it’s salt held by individual members. I’m not going to have a philosophical debate with anyone as to whether they agree or not with my view on this….if people agree…great…if not…that’s ok too.

      The oath requires an individual to perform duties, faithfully/diligently/and impartially – i don’t see this, although sure some try do this to the best of their abilities. To obey/perform all lawful orders/instructions received without fear, favor or affection? I see nothing but fear, blatant and preferred favouritism by RCMP leaders who as a result, have absolutely no chance at building a culture of trust and couldn’t give a shit. As a “real” leader attempting to build a level of high trust, people understand the intent of actions better and can interpret complex interpersonal issues between people where there isn’t favouritism. If trust is low, people instinctively assume the worst intent rather than the best one.

      I can only hope with remaining members left, that have any core values left, to “do the best that they can”. I do not hold any member to their ‘oath’ or ‘core values’ when they’re represented by the RCMP’s “Mickey Mouse Senior Mgmt” and an organisation that doesn’t stand for a fraction of what it use to creates no purposeful meaning.

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