The Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy, also known as CAPS, combines the efforts of the police, the community, and other agencies to solve various problems within the community. The approach of the CAPS program is to be proactive instead of reactive.
"Problem solving at the neighborhood level is supported by a variety of strategies, including neighborhood-based beat officers; regular Beat Community Meetings involving police and residents; extensive training for both police and community; more efficient use of City services that impact crime; and new technology to help police and residents target crime hot spots” (2008, Chicago Police Department, Para. 3). By combining the efforts of officers and individuals throughout the community, public safety issues are addressed.
The CAPS program was started in 1993 in five of the City 's 25 police districts. It was implemented in the Englewood District, the Marquette District, the Austin District, the Morgan Park District, and the Rogers Park District. These districts were chosen because of their crime levels, diversity, and economic standings. In 1994, CAPS was introduced to the remaining 20 police districts and is presently implemented Citywide.
In regard to patrol with the CAPS program, they assign eight to nine officers to work the City 's 279 police beats. These officers survey and patrol the same areas for at least 12 months at a time. By staying at the same location for such a long duration, this allows the officers to become familiar with the residents, and allows the residents to become familiar with the officers. "Beat teams are fully equipped, motorized police units. They patrol primarily in their squad cars, but sometimes on foot as well. Beat officers respond to calls for police service on their beats, especially those calls that are of a non-emergency nature" (2008, Chicago Police Department, Para. 1). With officers readily available and accessible, this allows a fast
References: Bowean, L. (2013, February 25). Chicago police look to revamp CAPS. Chicago Tribune.com. Retrieved from http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-02-25/news/ct-met-caps-chicago-police-20130225_1_caps-program-chicago-police-fight-crime Chicago Police Department. (2008). What is CAPS? Retrieved from https://portal.chicagopolice.org/portal/page/portal/ClearPath/Get%20Involved/How%20CAPS%20works/What%20is%20CAPS Moore, N. (2013, January 8). Chicago revamps community policing program. WBEZ.org. Retrieved from http://www.wbez.org/news/chicago-revamps-community-policing-program-104778