Phoenix Police Earn High Marks From Voters

Most Want an Expanded Police Force

PHOENIX (October 12, 2020)- Despite anti-police rhetoric through a summer of protests across the country, the Phoenix Police Department is viewed positively among the community.

In a poll conducted by OH Predictive Insights, a majority of Phoenicians give the Phoenix PD a passing grade. According to the OHPI survey, 59% of voters say the department deserves an ‘A’ or a ‘B’ while just 15% say it warrants a ‘D’ or an ‘F.’

“The data is clear,” says Mike Noble, Chief of Research at OH Predictive Insights, “Voters in the City of Phoenix appreciate the job their police force does and would feel safer with more men and women in uniform on the street.”

The poll found that nearly six in ten (58%) registered voters living in Phoenix had a favorable opinion of the Phoenix PD. Less than one-quarter of respondents had an unfavorable view of the group. Not only does the city as a whole view the department in a positive light, pluralities of voters of every party, ethnicity, gender, and age group do as well.

There is also a bit of “hometown pride” when it comes to the city’s view of the Phoenix PD. In general, and specifically on the topics of response times, violent crime, and looting/rioting, Phoenix residents believe Phoenix PD does as good or better of a job than departments of other large cities.

Looking specifically at voters who have had an interaction with a Phoenix police officer – only about one-third of city residents claims to have done so in the last 12 months – opinion is overwhelmingly glowing. Two-thirds (69%) of those who came into contact with an officer had a positive experience and just 15% had a negative interaction.

The experience was viewed more positively by older voters, Republicans, and whites, but even among non-whites, younger voters, and Democrats more said it was good than bad. Respondents who had a recent interaction with an officer were then asked to describe the officer(s) they came into contact with. Most said the officer was either helpful or trustworthy, while very few said the officer was with not helpful, rude, or racist.

 Amid recent claims that the police department has too much power and should be ‘defunded,’ most of Phoenix disagrees. More than half (55%) of voters believe that the city would be safer with more officers – an opinion shared by pluralities of voters of all races, parties, and ages.

Providing voters more information about the size of the police department only makes them want even more police. Comparing the size of the police force to those of other comparably large cities, 59% of respondents thought that the department was understaffed. When shown an infographic comparing the stagnant size of the police force in Phoenix to the growing size of the city’s population, the share of those who thought the department was too small grew even larger (63%).

“Phoenix Police officers have a difficult job to do under sometimes very stressful conditions,” said Michael “Britt” London, President of the Phoenix Law Enforcement Association. “It is important we are properly staffed to protect both the community and fellow police officers. We will continue to work with city leaders to find the best ways to increase staffing and provide the needed resources to the Phoenix Police Department.”

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Methodology: This poll was conducted as an online opt-in panel survey. The survey was completed by OH Predictive Insights from September 17th to October 2nd, 2020, from a City of Phoenix Registered Voter sample. The sample demographics were weighted to accurately reflect gender, age, region, party affiliation, and ethnicity. The sample size was 900 completed surveys, with an MoE of ± 3.3%. Numbers may not equal 100% due to rounding. All non-released questions prior to the questions released would not reasonably be expected to influence responses to all released questions. The questions on the poll report contain the exact questions from the survey using the verbiage presented to the respondents.

Media Contacts:

Mike Noble, OH Predictive Insights, m.noble@ohpredictive.com, (480) 313-1837

Lorna Romero, PLEA, lorna@elevatestrategiesaz.com, (480) 231-8930

About OH Predictive Insights: As a nonpartisan market research, predictive analytics, and public opinion polling firm, Phoenix-based OH Predictive Insights provides accurate polling, focus groups, data analytics, and advanced targeted marketing to political and non-political clients alike. With leading professionals in the advertising, communication, polling, and political arenas, OH Predictive Insights will service political and non-political clients looking to improve their footing on key stakeholders and consumers. For more information, please call 602-362-5694 or submit a request online.

About PLEA: The Mission of PLEA is to promote the positive role of the police profession. To protect and secure members’ rights and benefits through effective representation and professional relationships with the community and local, state, and national governments.

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