The Korea Herald


Woman challenges male-dominated police

By 양승진

Published : June 30, 2011 - 19:38

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Being a policeman calls for endless efforts, especially for women in Korea. The male-dominated organization selects only few policewomen every year, making competition intense.

However, officer Shin Sang-hee, 27, passed the exam for the Gwangju Metropolitan Police Agency two years ago. With only one position allocated for women, she outperformed 538 competitors.

“I was only lucky,” Shin said, blushing.

She has dreamt of becoming a policewoman since childhood. With people questioning role of females at work, she said when it comes to duty, gender does not make a difference.

Shin started her career at a police box, and is now relocated to riot department. She is one of the first members of the female unit.

In a short time, she has proven her skill by participating in riot suppression, patrol activities and traffic control.

Shin continues to exert efforts to enhance her capabilities. She recalled hard times dealing with drunk people during night shift. In order to overcome her physical limitations as a female, she regularly goes to the gym.
Shin Sang-hee (Yonhap News) Shin Sang-hee (Yonhap News)

“I believe that the time has changed, that policewomen are no longer biased, nor receive any discrimination,” Shin said. “As long as you try hard, people will recognize your efforts.”

Korea first launched its female police officer’s department in July 1, 1946, by recruiting 16 executives and 64 officers. To commemorate the moment, every July 1 is recognized as “policewomen day.”

“With strength of women, who are more meticulous and less tempted by bribery, I want to develop my specialization in investigation,” Shin added.

By Kang Yoon-seung (