Monday, April 1, 2019

Confronting erosion of trust between police and communities

Community policing principles should be incorporated into every facet of U.S. law enforcement activities, from the training of raw recruits to performance measurements of serving officers, says a new study released by the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, according to The Crime Report.
The massive 416-page report, entitled “New Era of Public Safety,” which the conference described as a “starting point for communities and police departments to work together to achieve policing reform in the 21st century,” offers 100 sweeping recommendations to police agencies across the country—including some that openly contradict policy strategies of the Trump administration.
Based on consultations with leading chiefs, academics, policymakers, and police organizations, the report argues that police agencies across the U.S. must allow communities a “greater say” in their operations in order to eradicate the racial biases and warrior culture that have opened a chasm of distrust between law enforcement officers and the citizens they serve—particularly in at-risk communities—over much of the past decades.
“The pain and frustration are profound,” wrote Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of the  Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, in her introduction to the report.
“It is no understatement that we are confronting serious challenges in solving the erosion of trust between police and the communities they serve.”
The emphasis on strengthening community policing comes as the White House considers eliminating the Community Oriented Policing Services Program(COPS), established in 1994 during the presidency of Bill Clinton, by folding its budget into other programs within the Justice Department’s Office of Justice Programs.
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