We hear community policing bandied around often these days, especially by law enforcement or police after some incident like the one that set off the Ferguson Mz rebellion, and, yes it was a rebellion against questionable use of police force, sparked like all riots over the past fifty years by police behavior, the killing of Michael Brown. So just what is community policing, or as I refer to it, community-oriented policing (COP).
On page sixty-six of my book, I say that community policing broadens the scope of policing and takes the community’s perception and definition of its own problems seriously. In my view, COP is whatever a community defines it as. This means that residents, not police, provide the definition and the police act accordingly. That does not mean that police are not at the table during the definition process, it’s optional but preferable so that effective communication takes place.
When the words community policing creeps from the lips of law enforcement, or anyone else for that matter, always ask them to define what they mean. Agreement here can be the start of constructive dialog.
On another note, I just signed the petition “Kamala Harris: Appoint a Special Prosecutor to investigate and prosecute law enforcement use of force on Change.org.
It’s important. Will you sign it too? Click here:
Terima Kasih (Thanks!)