the crime rates rise, officer moral gets worse, and the community
becomes more and more disenfranchised with the Department, the top
leadership at LAPD refuses to implement, indeed, to even consider,
a real full-fledged Community Policing policy. Yet it knows such
programs exist, and are a great success, across this country and
around the world.
lack of vision is, to say the least, appalling.
attitude seems to come from a fear that Community Policing reduces
the power and authority of the Department. Old militaristic ideas
are cherished and protected, to the detriment of the City. There
is no more than a wink and a nod at the possibility that anyone
outside Parker Center might have a good idea. And any proposed policy
change is seen as treasonous even to suggest.
offers have come from other cities, government departments, and
established experts suggesting time-tested Community Policing alternatives.
Their offers to assist the LAPD in their implementation seem to
fall on deaf ears.
there are many who are still ready to share.
Because it is well known by those who experience them that partnerships
between the police and the community have many favorable and demonstrable
· Lower crime rates occur because of the emphasis on sharing of
information, and proactive crime control and prevention
· Trust is established as the community begins to perceive the Department
and police officer as non-adversarial
· Minority communities begin to feel empowered, and a part of the
greater whole, as they find they have a real voice and a vital role
· Moral within the Department increases because police officers
respond well to community involvement and problem solving
· Better recruitment occurs as the reputation of LAPD improves and
the Department becomes more attractive as a career path
· Training which includes Community Policing at the Academy produces
officers who are eager to interact with the public they serve
· Officer retention becomes less of a preoccupation, since more
Officers are happy with their jobs
· There are tremendous financial benefits to the city, as the partnership
with community members reduces the need for additional officers,
and the cost of crisis management comes down
· The quality of life in the City of Los Angeles improves as residents
become participants in protecting and serving each other
who have freely shared with the Department on a regular basis include
a who's who in law enforcement. Despite the fact that their offers
have thus far fallen on deaf ears, the US Department of Justice,
the German Police Institute, the Italian Federal Police Labor Unions,
the Swiss Federal Police, the Departments in London, Buffalo, Chicago,
San Diego and our own LA County Sheriffs Department, all of who
have successful programs, are eager to share … just for the asking.
concern for a lack of vision in all this is real, founded. The current
LAPD leadership has no intention of letting go of old ideas. It
is committed to them.
today's world, where the City of Los Angeles must live with the
threat of both international and local terrorists, real Community
Policing is not a nicety … it's essential.
It seems it's up to us community members to lead the way ...