Madison Police ranks one of the most gender-diverse departments in America

Madison Police ranks one of the most gender-diverse departments in America

The Madison Police Department is one of the most gender-diverse in the country, according to a new survey done by Politico.

“That is one of the reasons I came to Madison and I came to this department,” said Officer Amy Bramlett.

About 30 percent of the Madison Police Department is made up of women, and it has been since at least 2000.

UW Madison Police said they’re right on the city’s heels with 29 percent women, including the chief and assistant chief.

“I actually don’t think that people are very much surprised anymore. In fact, I think it’s something that this community has come to expect and in some ways assume and take for granted,” said UW Madison Police Chief Kristen Roman.

Roman, who served with the Madison police from 1990 to 2017, said the UW Madison Police department has made the greatest strides in higher ranks and leadership positions. Women hold 30 percent of the supervisory positions.

But she said there is still more to be done.

“The fact remains here in Dane County, I am still the only woman chief of a police department and my predecessor was the only in Dane County for 25 years,” Roman said.

In 1970, roughly 2 percent of law enforcement departments in the United States were female. The last statistics in 2013 show a rise to only 13 percent.

Bramlett said women are necessary to the force and they bring a different style of policing.

“I know sometimes victims who are women in domestic assault cases, they may feel more comfortable speaking to a woman,” she said.

The Madison departments said they are working hard to get their message out and focus on recruiting more women.