The current trend in American policing today is toward the philosophy of Community-Oriented Policing. This strategy focuses on the causes of crime and places an emphasis on integrating policing with the community and the neighborhood.
The Community Policing officers regularly attend neighborhood watch meetings, business/merchant association group meetings, meet with citizen activists, church leaders, and other public service agencies and providers. In an effort to improve the overall quality of life in Kansas City, Kansas, the officers network with other police departments and governmental agencies in an effort to address crime, fear of crime, social and physical disorder, neighborhood and community decay.
Three Keys to Creating and Maintaining Police / Community Partnerships:
- Creating Trust-based Partnerships
- The catalyst for creating partnerships is often a desire on the part of more than on person or group to achieve a common goal, solve a common problem or work on a specific task. Police-community partnerships usually take root because of a actual or potential crime problem that undermines the community's quality of life.
- The partnerships very first formation objective is to identify civilian and police leadership. The primary role of leadership is to help the group organize, clarify its mission and come to consensus on one achievable goal and related objectives. The process of coming to agreement on a common goal often leads to the realization that more resources are necessary, which in turn broadens the partnership.
- Although community partnerships are created because of a problem or goal requiring the active involvement and participation of more than one person or group, a dedicated leader(s) is necessary to energize, mobilize and organize group action and activity. This is where trust-based leadership becomes a key component. Successful partnerships allow each participant to demonstrate leadership by assigning him or her tasks or responsibilities based on the participant's interests and skills, as opposed to just his or her availability. Successful partnerships continuously encourage and develop potential leaders in this way.
- Facilitating Trust-based Communication
- Communication among and between the police and the community is a key to the health and wellness of the partnership. Whether or not the communication is trusted depends on how information is (or is not) communicated, and by whom. Trust-based communication is the key to collaborative decision making. Without it, shared decisions are difficult to implement and impossible to sustain. Trust-based communication is facilitated when the police-community partnership establishes and utilizes different techniques, procedures and individuals, procedures and individuals to communicate to its constituent members. Effective communication is essential to community policing.
- Trust-based problem solving
- Police-community partnerships are generally created to prevent or address community crime and disorder. Community leaders recognize that crime problems are generally layered on top of other quality-of-life issues. In the formative stages of partnerships, it is a natural tendency for community leaders to focus on the causes of crime and for the police leaders to focus on apprehending perpetrators. Trust-based problem solving hinges on the ability of the police and the community to look at a problem with a shared vision, trusting that each partner will support a unified approach to resolving it of diminishing its impact. Although the police may take a leadership role in certain areas, their overall efforts should be in support of the partnership.
- Community / Neighborhood Action Planning
- Crime Prevention Programs
- Landlord / Property Manager Training
- Crime Free Multi Housing (CFMH)
- Crime Prevention Tips
- Neighborhood Clean-ups
- Kansas City Metro Crime Commission
- Metropolitan Community Service Program (MCSP)
- A Concern Community Eliminating Neighborhood Trash (ACCENT)
- Neighborhood Crime Prevention Patrol (NCPP)
- Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED)
- Assertive Code Enforcement
- Police Mountain Bike Patrols
- Selective Enforcement...helping communities maintain a safe environment
Useful Web Site Links
Organizations / Local Partnerships: