Delo analyses major drop in trust in police

Ljubljana – A significant drop in trust in police requires a reflection, cautions the newspaper Delo in Monday’s front-page commentary.

Pollster Valicon has been determining public trust in institutions and professions since 2012 and confidence in the police force hit a record low in the October survey.

In general, surveys show a bipolar relationship Slovenians have towards the state: “We don’t trust the political class, but we have valued the great public systems – education and healthcare – and the most symbolically prominent parts of the state apparatus – the police and the army.”

“In December 2018, the police enjoyed the highest level of trust in the past decade, being ahead of education, healthcare and the army, whereas today it has hit the lowest point.”

People still trust the police more than political institutions, “but the drop in trust is nevertheless significant” and its causes should be therefore determined by an independent analysis.

The paper points out that public trust is “a much stronger currency for police officers than armour, helmets, batons, tear gas cannons or water cannons”.

A recent statement by the police commissioner that the head of the police now runs the force, but it used to be the other way around offers the first possible explanation of the developments.

The drop in trust may have been caused by the fact that the police leadership “has allowed the police to operate on the basis of government decrees rather than laws passed by the National Assembly”, concludes the commentary headlined The Police Are Doing Badly.