Community-Based Policing: Law Enforcement for the Twentieth Century

Topics: Police, Crime, Law enforcement Pages: 7 (2028 words) Published: October 8, 1999
Community-Based Policing: Law Enforcement For The Twentieth Century



Thesis:Community-based policing provides hope for the future of Law enforcement.

I. Introduction to C.B.P.
A.The roots of C.B.P.
B.So what is community?
II.The two elements of C.B.P. law enforcement
philosophy are:
A. Community partnership.
B. Problem solving.
III. The reaction of police to change.
IV. The future of C.B.P.
A. A first step in C.B.P.
B. Measuring success.
C. Crime prevention.
V. Conclusion.


"In Philadelphia, a pulsating tavern juke box that has caused irate neighbors to log 500 Police calls in six months, was moved away from a common wall with the adjoining building.@ (Author unknown US News) The calls stopped. Though it seems simple, such a move is at the heart of what we know as Community-based Policing.

The movement toward C.B.P. has gained momentum in recent years. As Police and community leaders search for more effective ways to enhance the sense of public safety and the quality of life in their communities. We have accepted C.B.P in one police department after another,and we are ready now to agree that "C.B.P. provides hope for the future of Law enforcement." We can trace the seed of C.B.P. back to Sir Robert Peel, the father of the modern Police system, who said "the Police is the public and the public are the Police"(Braiden). For different reasons, the Police lost sight of that principle defining their relationship with the public. Modern historians have said that the reform era in government, which started in the 1900's to combat corruption, along with the move toward the professional image of police work, resulted in the separation of Police and Community (Kelling, Moore, pg-5)

Reform style Policing emerged in the 50s and 60s with rotating shifts and frequent movement of officers, (to prevent corruption). Random patrolling (a reactive police technique) was also detrimental to the link between Police and public. The police adopted a policy of centralized control to ensure compliance with set standards, and to encourage a professional aura of impartiality. All these policies along with the use of automobiles, telephones, and other technological advances helped distance the Police more. The calls for service increased as urban population and crime awareness increased, making the police almost totally reactive. The introduction of computers only encouraged that false idea of "quick" reactive response and a statistical view toward measuring success in policing(rather than analyzing the local needs of the community.)

By the late 70's the communities had become a diverse pool of nationalities, subcultures, and attitudes. People identified themselves as parts of separate groups and at times the Police was not part of what they called "us.@ During this time, a burst of new ideas and changes in the sociopolitical and economic structure began to occur that would eventualy,bring about a new kind of police officer.

In this changing environment, all social institutions were scrutinized. The Police, slow and overburdened, were losing ground rapidly. Police leaders felt the need to reflect on these problems and their overall relationship (their image) with the public. In their attempts to understand what was going wrong, many studies and experiments were sponsored. One of them, the "KANSAS STUDY" proved that, no matter how many police officers are devoted to random patrolling, there is no effect on the actual crime rate. (Bureau of justice asst. pg. 13-65)

The government had recognized the problems of crime fighting and the problems of Police - Community relations, as far back as 1967.The Presidents Commission on Law Enforcement and Administration of Justice report: The Challenge of crime...

Cited: in Newport News. Washington, DC: Police executive research forum, 1987 Pg
Title : The challenge of crime in a free society (Washington, DC: US
Government printing office, 1967 Pg 97-103)
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