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The police have played a central role in South Africa's troubled past, are caught up in its crime-ridden present, and remain key to a more peaceful future. Despite this, most citizens know very little about the lives and experiences of the average cop in the 185000-strong South African Police Service. This title is composed of excerpts from interviews with twenty-eight current and former members of the service who, for the first time, share their personal experiences of life behind the badge. There is mantra among the police: 'What happens on the shift stays on the shift.' In Behind the Badge, members talk openly about the experiences hidden behind this wall of silence. The title covers a wide range of themes, including reasons for signing up; training; transformation from SAP to SAPS; the case; lethal force; torture; corruption; ethics; experiencing loss; work and home life; the emotional toll; humour; sex and power.

Paperback, 304 pages

Published 2012