Policing is one of the toughest jobs anywhere in the world with long hours, dangerous shifts and acting as the last line of protection between the general public and tyranny a lot of the time. Despite its perils, this job is held in high regard wherever you are in the world and is done by those willing to put themselves out there on the streets. However, even in this progressive day and age, there are very few women in Police forces (generally speaking) and so in this gallery, we celebrate those who have taken up the cause in whatever country they happen to be in.
Ranked as one of the best police forces in the world in one of the most peaceful countries in the world, the Austrian Police force, as it is now, was only formed in 2005 by merging the Gendarmerie and the Polizei into the federal Police Force. With about 12% women within the force, the Austrian police force has a relatively high female presence compared to many other countries and even has all female task forces in certain cities.
15% of the Polish Policja are female and in 2015, the country nominated its first female chief of Police. Women have been allowed into the Polish police force since 1925, a centralized force that operates within the 17 municipal regions of the country.
In a country of strict religious grounding, women have not always been allowed into the police force and even when they were, only lower rank positions were available to them, however, since 2009, this has changed and the first class of women advanced through elite officer training. A highly dangerous job in a country where insurgents often target figures of authority, it also one of the most highly paid.
Only around 7.7% of Japan’s police force are women and most are mainly on low-profile assignments such as traffic control. Up until the early 1990’s female officers were not armed, had to wear skirts instead of slacks, and were assigned to ‘less hazardous’ duties like traffic control, juvenile counseling, and office duties but this has slowly begun to change over time. It was only in 2009 that female officers were put on full time ‘koban’ duties or beat patrol.
In 2003, some 400 women were employed by Iranian law enforcement as the first female officers since the 1979 revolution and although some still remain within the ranks of the police force, they do not currently recruit female officers due to strict religious concerns.
Women have been a feature in the Malaysian police force since 1948 when they were employed to stop food supplies falling into the hands of communist terrorists and were needed to help check women for smuggling operations. In 1955 the first intake of seven women’s with the rank of Women Police Inspector was undertaken, when the Policewoman unit was officially organized, and a year later 56 female police constables were employed.
7. The Netherlands
Nochtli Peralta Alvarez is a former police officer in The Netherlands turned Instagram model and athlete who you can follow at instagram.com/nochtlii. Still working as on officer when she turned her hand to modeling, she would regularly get recognized on the street. The Dutch Police Corps is split into 25 regional units and employs around 50,000 people in the country with officers regularly on patrol.
Increasing steadily over the past decade, around 18% of the Singapore police force is now female with an estimated 8,800 uniformed officers, an increase from 14% in 2003. The Women Special Constabulary was first formed in 1949 as a voluntary unit and in 1990, women were allowed part-time positions on traffic patrol and by 2007, a Special Women’s Task Team comprising 23 female officers was formed.
Women were first recruited into the Peruvian National Police in 1992 were roles mainly consisted of traffic duties. Now, approximately 11% of the police force are female and greater efforts to employ more throughout the country have been put in place in an attempt to stamp out corruption.
Women make up only a tiny fraction of Pakistan’s overall police force at around just 0.89%. However, concerted efforts have been made to encourage more women to sign up as it has been found that it can go to greater lengths in helping combatting extremism and terrorism within the country with the US embassy also offering training.
With a makeup of around 16% women, the Israeli police force is a centralized force operating out of Jerusalem without any municipal departments. With around 35,000 persons on the payroll. There are also 70,000 Civil Guard volunteers who contribute time to assist officers in their own communities.
The women’s police force in England was first founded in 1914 and staffed by volunteers but a year later, the first female officer with the full powers of arrest was in employ. Around 27.3% of the police force in England and Wales are female.
In 1962, the Chilean police force was amongst the first uniformed services within the country to allow women into its ranks. Known as the Carabineros de Chile, the force was formed in 1927 and has jurisdiction over the whole country.
Gaining much attention on social media, this police officer in China’s Anyue County is said to be so beautiful and charming that she can persuade anyone. Often tasked with tackling illegal street vendors, she apparently has such a charming demeanor and smile that vendors do her bidding without arrest or confrontation.
15. Dominican Republic
The Dominican Republic National Police and has a separate division of tourism police that can be seen in certain parts of the country. A general police training school was established in 1966 in Dominica and women have been encouraged to join the police force due to the amount of violence directed towards women in the country.
The first woman to joins the Indian Police Service was in 1972 and since then the number has increased dramatically to around 105,000 which is about 6% of the overall force. Now, with over 400 all women police stations in India, a 2004 study found that this led to a 23% increase in reporting of violence against women and children, as well as a higher conviction rate.
Jordan was the first Arab country to employ policewomen within its law enforcement in 1972 when they primarily used in the police laboratory, in budgeting and accounting, public relations, licensing, and in prison operations. However, operations and patrolling opportunities have become increased and far more frequent since then and they are now also visible on border security.
31% of Norway’s police force are women with the aim of making the number 40% very soon, it seems more than likely that half of the police force will be female in the next few years. Dating back to the 13th century, the Norwegian police force is relatively small with around 13,000 employees of which 8,000 are officers.
19. South Korea
Headlines were set ablaze in South Korea and internationally when former Maxim model Kim Miso announced she was to join the Korean police force. Miss Miso was a Miss Maxim Korea 2014 contestant before joining the police force in the capital of South Korea, Seoul.
The Russian police force was thrust into the headlines when one of its cadets went on to become Miss St Petersburg. A young, Oxana Federova then went on to become Miss Kalokagathia 1999, Miss Fitness, Miss Fortune, and Miss Russia 2001 but declined the opportunity to go to Miss Universe that year in order to carry on in her studies. In 2002, Oxana then went on to win Miss Universe and then went on to be named the most beautiful miss Universe ever in 2011. After her Miss Universe stint came to an end Oxana went on to get a Ph.D. and then returned to the police force going on to be being promoted to Captain in September 2002 and Major in 2005.
Sofia Loren Deliu is a police officer in the Philippines and also a Miss Philippines Earth Contestant in 2015. A beauty pageant contestant before she joined the Philippines National Police force, in sich contests as Miss Teen Philippines 2006 and Miss Baguio 2008, Ms. Deliu continued to enter into pageants after her successful enrollment into the police force and even received support from the country’s leaders. She is now part of the security detail for President Rodrigo Duerte.
The first corps of policewomen in Yemen was employed in 1999 and today, some 2,000 women serve in Yemen’s internal security forces. However, numbers are steadily decreasing as the profession is widely seen as male orientated and parents are reluctant to let their children sign up.
Women make up 40% of the overall staff of the Swedish police force and 28% of the officers, and the number is ever increasing with the first group of female police officers being employed in 1908. It wasn’t however, until 1957 that the possibility of becoming a Police Constable on patrol duty was made available to women.
Earlier this year, a young recruit into the Taiwan police force took the internet by storm for her good looks as pictures of her in her uniform were shared on social media. 23-year-old Huang Yichun graduated from the Taipei Police Academy in 2013 and now works for the Governmental Police Squad of New Taipei City in Taiwan.
The was the first American-born female police officer in the United States, was hired in 1910 but it took another six decades for numbers to really increase as, by 1970, only two percent of all police were women. The 90s saw this number begin to take off and in 1991, 9% of the force was female.
Women make up almost 30 % of Nicaragua’s police force and the chief of police is also a woman. One of the highest ratios of policewomen in the force in the world, It began with the Sandinista revolution of 1979 which saw many women become guerrillas and fight on equal footing with men. When the Sandinista’s won the country, the perception of women in roles of authority had changed and more and more moved into law enforcement.
27. North Korea
Little is known about the set-up of most of North Korea’s security forces but women are predominantly seen in policing as traffic cops with one being awarded the country’s top honor in 2013 for an unspecified “heroic feat” leading some to speculate that she may have rescued the country’s supreme leader from a traffic accident.
With around 30.5% women in the police staff of Lithuania, it has a very high number of female staff members compared to other forces around the world.
Made up of 400,000 police officers, there are currently 13,000 female police officers in the Indonesian National Police, which is a branch of the country’s armed forces. In 2014 the country came under fire by the human rights watch for subjecting female applicants to the role to a virginity test. Despite complaints that this is invasive and derogatory, the practice is still believed to be in place.
There are three kinds of police in Italy, the Polizia, who deal with local policing issues, the Vigili, who are town police dealing mostly with road traffic infringements, and the Carabinieri who are the military police. Until 1999 it was not possible for women to join the latter of these police forces and in 2007, the Polizia made headlines when it issued ‘official’ stilettos to its 14,750 female officers to give their uniform a “younger, sexier look.”
A senior police commissioner in Germany was bombarded by messages from adoring fans when her Instagram photos went viral. Adrienne Koleszar competed in the bikini class of the Bodybuilding-WM in 2015 and has gained a lot of recognition online with some fans even going so far as to be begged to be arrested.
Rose Fortune was Canada’s first female police officer in the 19th century but it wasn’t until 1912 that women were ‘officially’ allowed to become police officers. Women officers account for 20.8% of the Canadian officers in the police force.
There is no military or armed forces in Iceland so all law enforcement falls under the jurisdiction of the Icelandic Police force except for that of Icelandic waters which are patrolled by the Icelandic coastguard. There are around 653 police officers in total in the country, 95 of which are women. With the first and only ever shooting death in the country from a police operation happening in 2013, Iceland consistently ranks as the safest police force.
There is an ongoing gender equality struggle in Turkey and, in a largely Islamic country, Women were often kept out of the police force by not being able to wear headscarves if serving, however, this ban was lifted in September 2016.
There are two police forces in France called “Police Nationale” and “Gendarmerie Nationale” with the Gendarmerie being a military branch. Women were initially hindered from entering the police force due to a French law from 1892 banned women from working at night. The ban wasn’t abolished by the French parliament until 2000
The police force in Australia is composed of different uniformed officers over a number of states.These police women pictured herein are from the South Australian police force whose images would represent more or less the type of women in the Australian police force