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Community/Neighbourhood/Problem-Oriented Policing

Sometimes linked to restorative values, these approaches to policing emphasize strong relationships between police officers and community members with an orientation toward helping the community solve problems.

Wong, Kam C.. Philosophy of Community Policing in China
Part I of this article states the focus and justifications of this research, which is an effort to contrast American and Chinese community-policing philosophy and practice. Part 2, which serves both as a literature review and a comparative context for the study of China's community policing philosophy, reviews the evolution of the American approach to community policing. Part 3 then describes the philosophy of Chinese community policing, past and present, compared with the Western mode. Part 4 discusses the lessons learned through this investigation of Chinese community policing philosophy. The article notes that the Chinese social control system is based in three broad principles: reformation of the offender, restoration of the social relationship, and reintegration of the offender into the community. The philosophy of Chinese policing, conceptually and operationally, is determined by Communist political ideology that has been incrementally refined through time and variously interpreted by different leaders. The Chinese leadership has advocated that the people, or the mass, is the master of its own destiny. Practically and operationally, this means the police must view social control from the people's perspective, seek their support, and be amenable to their supervision. Any policing detached and isolated from the people would not be effective in identifying local problems and detecting hidden criminality. In the United States, social control is imposed externally and formally. Social control is organized, bureaucratized, and legalized, and it is applied by and through the police. The police engage and involve the public only when required. Community policing as developed in the United States means that the police are the dominant social control agents, albeit with the indispensable help and mandatory supervision of the people.
Pollard, Charles.. "If your only tool is a hammer, all your problems will look like nails."
Pollard maintains that a fundamental limitation in policing has been that the police only had the traditional criminal law and criminal justice processes to deal with a wide range of problems in communities, many of which would be better addressed through other approaches. Restorative justice, raising fundamental questions about the traditional criminal justice system, presents the possibility of a shift in police culture to a more problem-oriented, community style of policing. With this in mind, Pollard looks at policing and problem-solving in a civil society, the evolution of restorative justice in the Thames Valley Police, community safety and the limitations of the formal criminal justice system, limitations in the formal trial system, community safety and restorative justice, and prospects for advancing restorative justice in the national and international spheres.
Nicholl, Caroline G. "Making the links between community policing and community justice."
Noting the challenges posed by crime rates and traditional responses to crime, Nicholl examines the potential in community policing and the risks to this approach. With this in mind, Nicholl relates the background to community policing in a section of London. This leads to a consideration of the nature of community policing, followed by discussion on problems in developing community policing. Nicholl concludes by connecting all of this with community justice and projecting future opportunities and threats for community justice.
Bazemore, Gordon and Cole, A W. "Police in the 'Laboratory' of the Neighborhood: Evaluating Problem-Oriented Strategies in a Medium-Sized City."
A study evaluates the Lawrence (MA) Police Department's use of problem-oriented policing in a densely populated, high-crime area. Data were gathered in 1990-92 from pre- and post-program citizen surveys. Overall, the community policing initiative shows initial signs of at least partial success. General, though not conclusive, support emerged for the hypothesis that the intervention had a positive impact in the target neighborhoods on perceptions of fear and disorder. Contrary to expectations, citizen perceptions of police in the target neighborhood did not improve significantly relative to the rest of the city.
Nicholl, Caroline G. "Toolbox for implementing restorative justice and advancing community policing."
This document – styled as a toolbox by the author to emphasize its practical nature – is a guide to police departments interested in starting a restorative justice program. It is not a definitive examination of restorative justice, nor is it a training manual for facilitators of restorative justice processes. Nevertheless, it covers a number of key topics organized into seven parts: (1) values of restorative justice (e.g., repairing harms); (2) addressing victims’ needs (e.g., victim advocates); (3) holding offenders to account (e.g., positive shaming); (4) building community capacity (e.g., restorative community service); (5) developing a program (e.g., resources and funding); (6) benchmarks for evaluation (e.g., testing how restorative a program is); and (7) exploration of unresolved issues (e.g., police role in restorative justice). Please note that the toolbox is designed as a complement to a companion publication by the same author: Community Policing, Community Justice, and Restorative Justice: Exploring the Links for the Delivery of a Balanced Approach to Public Safety. This companion publication can be found online by going to this address: http://www.usdoj.gov/cops/cp_resources/pubs_ppse/restorative_justice.htm
Nicholl, Caroline G. Community Policing, Community Justice, and Restorative Justice: Exploring the Links for the Delivery of a Balanced Approach to Public Safety
Community policing has become a significant feature of modern policing, yet its meaning and implementation vary depending on where you are and with whom you speak. The future of community policing could be vulnerable to any sudden increase in the crime rate (provoking a renewed emphasis on the traditional model of professional policing) or the removal of funding support. Although there may be disagreement on how far community policing has come, and its fragility, one thing is clear: the challenges of the 21st century—violence, intercultural conflict, social and economic injustice, resource shortages, substance abuse—require us to think broadly and even more creatively about the future. To begin breathing life into a new vision for sustaining and advancing positive change, policing needs to be examined in light of (1) how crime is defined, and (2) its tie to a justice system that frustrates victims, alienates whole communities, and fuels skyrocketing financial and moral costs of punishment. Current developments in community and restorative justice are helping to shape ideas and thinking about what policing and the administration of justice could look like in the year 2019. Twenty years is probably about right to achieve more widespread understanding that current problems and paradoxes are often of our own making—and to learn that the methods we are using to offer protection and safety are reinforcing divisions in society, thus exacerbating the conditions that promote crime, fear, and disorder. The emerging paradigm of restorative justice might seem so alien, so naive, and so impractical that we miss the opportunity for a fundamental reappraisal of the values on which policing and justice should be founded. But starting with small changes, as suggested in this report, can make an enormous difference in how we think, speak, practice, and promote the meaning of community policing.
Parks, William R., II.. Community Policing, a Foundation for Restorative Justice
Community policing is a new philosophy of policing based on the concept that the police and citizens working together in creative ways can solve contemporary community problems related to crime, fear of crime, social and physical disorder and general neighborhood conditions. The philosophy is predicated on the belief that achieving these goals requires the police to develop a new relationship with citizens, allowing them the power to set local police priorities and involving them in efforts to improve the overall quality of life in their community. Community policing (CP) shifts the focus of police work from handling random crime calls to addressing community concerns. Community policing and restorative justice share the common characteristics of local action, local solutions, community standards and local control. Most importantly they seek to solve the problems by preventing, reforming and dealing with each individual and each problem as unique.
Editor. Understanding Problem-Oriented Policing
Problem-oriented policing is an attitudinal shift that asks police to respond to situations in such a way that they respond to the underlying conditions that gave rise to the behavior, not just to the symptomatic behavior itself.
Hastings, Sandie. An Eventful Journey: Restorative Justice and Leicestershire Police.
Below Sandie describes the latest chapter in her RJ story beginning with an opportunity to pilot restorative justice in neighbourhood policing on two estates in Leicestershire. The selection of Leicestershire as a pilot area for the Flanagan Report recommendations on community policing has provided a chance to put her learning to use on a much larger scale. (author's abstract).
Advice for Police and Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships
From the British Home Office: Some forces have decided to direct resources into RJ work in order to get the benefits it provides for victims, confidence, citizen focus and community engagement. While in some cases it may mean officers spending more time working directly with victims and offenders than they otherwise would do, this creates value for money gains where it effectively resolves what would have become recurrent problems. Where RJ processes are used as a diversion from prosecution, they are likely to save resources both for police and other criminal justice agencies. Time spent on RJ processes can be treated as incident-linked activity and therefore counted as a front-line activity. [From the article]
If Your Only Tool is A Hammer, All Your Problems Will Look Like Nails
Pollard maintains that a fundamental limitation in policing has been that the police only had the traditional criminal law and criminal justice processes to deal with a wide range of problems in communities, many of which would be better addressed through other approaches. Restorative justice, raising fundamental questions about the traditional criminal justice system, presents the possibility of a shift in police culture to a more problem-oriented, community style of policing. With this in mind, Pollard looks at policing and problem-solving in a civil society, the evolution of restorative justice in the Thames Valley Police, community safety and the limitations of the formal criminal justice system, limitations in the formal trial system, community safety and restorative justice, and prospects for advancing restorative justice in the national and international spheres.
. An exploration of the role of leadership in restorative policing in England and Wales.
This chapter explores the role of leadership in restorative policing in England and Wales and the impact of the external criminal justice policy environment on attempts to embed restorative approaches into police practice. It is clear that certain aspects of restorative justice chime with long-standing values in police culture, not least the emphasis on common-sense decision-making and the removal of unnecessary bureaucracy advocated by a focus on informal resolution. Yet, we argue that restorative policing cannot work where these ideas are placed solely in individual programmes. Instead, a clear vision needs to be articulated by police leaders with subsequent programmes being built around this overarching philosophy of ‘restorative policing’ that encourages leadership to ‘bubble up’ from below. (author's abstract)
Restorative justice is a win-win
from the article by John D. Due Jr. for CNN.com: ....The larger question this case raises is the role of the police force in a community. Is it to be at war with the community on a militarized basis to destroy the enemy in a zero-sum game of winners and losers? Does this mean we need to train our police in anti-terrorism and war games with a military orientation of being a winner against a loser?....
Wachtel, Benjamin and McCold, Paul. Community Is Not a Place: A New Look at Community Justice Initiatives
"If community justice is going to have any success, then, it is necessary to take a deeper look at the meaning of community. This paper will discuss the importance of defining exactly what is meant by the term 'community' in community justice initiative, especially community policing and restorative justice. We propose a nongeographic perspective on community, which can be used to focus and define what community justice initiatives should look like and what they should be trying to achieve. This perspective is based on recent developments in restorative justice and community policing, especially the Wagga/Real Justice model of family group conferences which, when used by police, exemplifies and integration of restorative justice and community policing. The implications of this perspective for community justice initiatives in general will be explored." (excerpt)
Bucqueroux, Bonnie. Community criminal justice: What community policing teaches us.
The author of this article observes that proponents of community policing believe that this new paradigm has the potential to serve as the model for dramatic reform of the entire criminal justice system. At the same time, the controversial and complicated history of community policing reveals the daunting problems that would challenge the implementation of a community criminal justice system. Amidst this context, the author defines community policing; compares changes in the model of medicine to changes in the model of criminal justice with respect to prevention and intervention; identifies principles of community justice; and paints a sketch of a community criminal justice system.
Cardiff given more say in justice
From News Wales (29 April 09): A range of new measures that gives communities more say in the way justice is delivered in their neighbourhoods as well as making local criminal justice agencies more accountable to the people they represent has today been announced by ministers. Cardiff is one of 30 areas across England and Wales pioneering a new package of measures to test a range of initiatives that will deliver justice for all and put people back at the heart of the justice system.
Dissel, Amanda and Muntingh, Lukas. Alliance for Crime Prevention Position Paper on Corrections
The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between the Department of Correctional Services (DCS) and what is known as "social crime prevention". In other words, does the DCS have an obligation or task towards those social, economic and environmental factors that are conducive to crime, and if they do, what should its approach be? Most crimes are committed outside of prisons where it affects the free population and the question needs to be asked if DCS has any responsibilities outside the walls of the prison. Logically the answer is yes, but in practical terms, the answer is more complicated. The realities of community life, poverty, development and politics make it starkly different from the prison set-up where the DCS is in control of the situation. This paper will explore this relationship between the DCS and social crime prevention looking at a number of themes: the contextual background of the DCS; legislative, policy and practice gaps; the Draft Green Paper on Corrections (DGP); social exclusion and inclusion; opportunities for the future. (excerpt)
MHA salutes Dennis Wittman
from Paul Mrozek's article in The Daily News: Dennis Wittman said Tuesday he didn't do anything special in his 25 years of leading the county's Genesee Justice program. People who attended the Mental Health Association of Genesee County annual meeting heard a different recounting of Witman's career. Wittman received the Constance E. Miller Award, given to a person who shows a strong commitment to mental health treatment in the community. ...."I believe he has gone above and beyond. If you know Dennis Witman, you know that he's excellent," said Kathy France, former board member with the Mental Health Association, the organization that presented Wittman with his award.
Face-to-face way to empower victims
from the op-ed by Mark Burns-Williamson in The Yorkshire Post: Burglaries, anti-social behaviour and low level crime including noise nuisance, affect lives and destroy confidence. They mean people live in fear in their own homes, cause untold damage to victims and can also ruin the lives of those committing these offences. Victims can feel devastated and left wondering why they were targeted, while the offenders seldom stop to think about the implications of their actions and can and often do go on to reoffend. This is where restorative justice can come in to present an alternative approach....
'Quick' justice on rise as offenders make amends
from Raymond Brown's article in Cambridge News: A disabled bike thief and a Cambridge University student are among hundreds of offenders to be dealt with by police using “quick” justice. Chief Constable Simon Parr said police were increasingly using restorative justice to deal with low-level crimes, saying some victims preferred it.

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