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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 48707 Find in a Library
Title: GETTING DOWN WITH THE POLICE
Journal: POLICE MAGAZINE  Volume:1  Issue:3  Dated:(JULY 1978)  Pages:5-14
Author(s): D C ANDERSON
Corporate Author: Criminal Justice Publications, Inc
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 10
Sponsoring Agency: Criminal Justice Publications, Inc
New York, NY 10017
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: TEAM POLICING, ONCE HERALDED AS A MEANS FOR PROMOTING POLICE JOB SATISFACTION AND COMMUNITY RELATIONS, HAS HAD MIXED RESULTS. TEAM POLICING IN THE SEVENTH DISTRICT OF ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI, IS EXAMINED.
Abstract: IN THE LATE 1960'S AND EARLY 1970'S, TEAM POLICING WAS PROMOTED BY PROGRESSIVE ADMINISTRATORS AS A CURE FOR LOW MORALE, ISOLATION FROM THE COMMUNITY, AND INEFFECTIVENESS. SINCE THEN, 128 CITIES HAVE EXPERIMENTED WITH TEAM POLICING. A 1973 STUDY OF TEAM POLICING IN SEVEN CITIES FOUND GENERALLY POSITIVE RESULTS. HOWEVER, TEAM POLICING IS FOUND IN 1978 IN ONLY TWO OF THESE CITIES. ANOTHER STUDY OF TEAM POLICING IN 19 CITIES WAS INCONCLUSIVE AS TO PROGRAM EFFECTIVENESS, AND THE LATEST RESEARCH EFFORT FOUND BOTH POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF NEIGHBORHOOD TEAM POLICING. IT WOULD BE PREMATURE TO DISMISS TEAM POLICING ON THE BASIS OF THESE REPORTS. FACTORS WHICH AFFECT THE EFFECTIVENESS OF TEAM POLICING PROGRAMS INCLUDE THE APPROACH TAKEN, PREIMPLEMENTATION STATUS OF COMMUNITY RELATIONS, AND PERSONNEL ATTITUDES TOWARD THE COMMUNITY-RELATIONS ASPECT OF POLICE WORK. SUCH FACTORS WILL VARY FROM CITY TO CITY. IN THE SEVENTH DISTRICT OF ST. LOUIS, A BLIGHTED AREA OF URBAN DECAY AND POVERTY, TEAM POLICING WAS INITIATED IN 1972. THE DISTRICT WAS DIVIDED AMONG FOUR TEAMS EACH UNDER A LIEUTENANT. OFFICERS WERE ENCOURAGED TO BECOME INVOLVED IN COMMUNITY ACTIVITIES, WERE PERMITTED TO DO THEIR OWN FOLLOWUP INVESTIGATIONS FOR ALL CRIMES EXCEPT HOMICIDE, AND WERE TRAINED IN PHOTOGRAPHY AND EVIDENCE COLLECTION. TO INCREASE FLEXIBILITY, A 4-DAY WORK-WEEK SCHEDULE WAS ADOPTED, AND A MANAGEMENT-BY-OBJECTIVES ADMINISTRATIVE APPROACH WAS ESTABLISHED WITH TEAMS MEETING FREQUENTLY TO SET GOALS AND MAKE IMPLEMENTATION PLANS. TO SOME EXTENT, THE TEAM POLICING PILOT PROGRAM HAS FOLLOWED THE PATTERN OF OTHER CITIES. AFTER 1 YEAR AS A WHOLLY AUTONOMOUS UNIT, THE UNIT WAS REINTEGRATED INTO THE COMMAND STRUCTURE, A CHANGE THAT HAS RESULTED IN FRUSTRATION FOR UNIT MEMBERS. WHILE THERE ARE INDICATIONS THAT TEAM POLICING IN THE SEVENTH DISTRICT MAY BE IN TROUBLE, COMMUNITY SUPPORT OF THE NEIGHBORHOOD RELATIONS ACTIVITIES WHICH HAVE BEEN UNDERTAKEN AND OF THE TEAM POLICING CONCEPT IN GENERAL HAVE BEEN POSITIVE. MIXED REACTIONS HAVE BEEN SEEN WITHIN THE FORCE, HOWEVER. MANY OFFICERS EXPRESS POSITIVE ATTITUDES TOWARD THE NEW AND EXPANDED RESPONSIBILITIES; FOR OTHERS, COMMUNITY RELATIONS IS AN UNDESIRED CHORE. UNIT SUPERVISORS FEEL POLICY FORMULATION HAS BEEN ENHANCED. A REPORT PREPARED FOR THE BOARD OF POLICE COMMISSIONERS, HOWEVER, WAS CRITICAL, AND SUPERVISORY PROBLEMS HAVE BEEN NOTED BY THE POLIE CHIEF. (JAP)
Index Term(s): Missouri; Morale; Police attitudes; Police command and control; Police community relations; Police effectiveness; Police management; Police manpower deployment; Police personnel; Program evaluation; Public Attitudes/Opinion; Team policing
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=48707

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