Among the many efforts and strategies adopted with the aim to fight the ever-increasing rate of crime is community policing. According to Cordner, community policing has transformed into a preeminent agenda for reforms in the wake of modern policing. Modern policing measures revolve around the idea that maintenance of law and order should not entirely be left to the police. It is crucial to discuss Cordner’s arguments regarding the importance of a good relationship between police and community as a determinant of success in community policing. Secondly, based on Durose’s report on community’s reaction and view on police assistance. Moreover, an analysis of the degree of public satisfaction and its effect, and finally determine whether the efforts made by police to enhance their interactions with the community have been efficient for community policing.
Community policing mainly seeks to develop relations between the community and its law enforcers. This strategy focuses on building relations between the police and the community as well as using these relations for the betterment of the community and is an integral aspect of enforcing and reinventing the maintenance of order (Miller, 2017). Cordner argues that success in community policing objective requires a coercion of ideal citizen efforts, their specific ideas and favorable approaches and mitigation plans to develop a secure and safe community (Durham & Alpert, 2015). Before the invent of modern policing, police functions were only limited to general enforcement of law and fighting crime. In simple words, this can be described as arrest and detain. However, community policing in the recent past broadens the previously narrowed police function to involve a wider spectrum of duties. These tasks include social service, protecting and enhancing law and maintaining order and offering assistance which include non-enforcement duties to the general public. The idea of community policing is that every citizen assumes the responsibility to maintain peace.
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It is only through community policing that citizens acquire the ability to contribute directly to matters that concern their safety. There are many devised forums for addressing issues that the community faces. Police meet with community leaders, business community executives or via call-in programs on communication devices, radio, and televisions and other citizens to discuss mitigation programs that must be put in place to solve such issues. All these revolve around proper and effective ways of communication. The police have the duty to obtain information on matters arising from the residents. On the other hand, the residents expect a positive, comprehensive response, and efficient actions to the problem. If residents mistrust police officers, they would in return withhold information or fail to report at all. Additionally, the failure of police to take proactive actions can lead to the collapse of the forums sought with the citizens. In this view, good police-community relations are vital.
According to Durose, many people regardless of age, race or gender seek police assistance on law enforcement and non-enforcement matters (Durham & Alpert, 2015). There is a minute disparity between the number of reports on these two issues. This research also reports up to 85% of persons who are satisfied with the manner in which police respond to matters arising. The range in nature of reported issues for the law enforcers to assist with other non-enforcement issues depicts how the community places trust on the police on a myriad of issues not centralized to law enforcement. This observation places emphasis on Cordner’s argument on how effective community policing is when it comes to altering the very nature of police service on a case to case basis to deal with an extensive approach that looks into the interest of the community.
According to Durose (2011), there is a high percentage of persons reporting non-crime emergencies as compared to persons reporting crime incidences and agreeing that police response improved the situation. In this regard, police services usefulness in matters other than solving crimes is evident. Moreover, a high percentage of people are likely to contact the police again based on the quality of time spent to eliminate problems. The quality of services rendered is determined by time, character, and integrity. Incorporation of standard values, beliefs and norms of a community into such an efficient and professional goal-oriented police body, coupled with utilizing the available free information resource ensures that the agenda for community policing is reached.
To conclude, success in community policing largely depends on relations. As we have seen, relations directly influence community attitudes towards the police. Research shows a large number of people who previously sought police attention was likely to seek assistance again on another encounter of the same nature. This judgment is by police behavior and response. Police behavior may be influenced by some factors, but citizen’s attitudes depend upon police behavior and job satisfaction. This proves to promote community-police relations and ensured effective services. This in return increases participation of citizens in reporting of crime on time. The community and police work together as a team and in Codner’s view, organizing people to work together as a team in many instances aids in improving efficiency and effectiveness in the manner of performance, problem-solving and enhancing the quality of work.
- Dunham, R. G. Alpert, G. P. (2015). Critical Issues in Policing: Contemporary Readings (7th Edition). Long Grove, Illinois: Waveland Press
- Miller, L. S. (2017). Community policing: Partnerships for problem solving. S.l.: Cengage Learning.