ATLANTA — The Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police (GACP) recently adopted a resolution to formally accept, acknowledge, support and use the definition of community policing originally authored by a Georgia State University professor. In its resolution, GACP encouraged all Georgia law enforcement agencies to adopt and use the definition to help direct their operations.
Community policing is defined as “a policy and strategy aimed at achieving more effective and efficient crime control, reduced fear of crime, improved quality of life, improved police services and police legitimacy through a proactive reliance on community resources that seeks to change crime-causing conditions. It assumes a need for greater accountability of police, greater public share in decision-making and greater concern for civil rights and liberties.”
Professor Emeritus Robert Friedmann, founding director of the Georgia International Law Enforcement Exchange, authored this definition in 1992. It has been used in resolutions also passed during the last two years by the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the New Hampshire Association of Chiefs of Police.
Friedmann, during four decades of research and training thousands of officers on community policing, has been instrumental in promoting the concept that to make a dent in crime, it is imperative for police to work closely with community organizations, nonprofit associations, local public agencies and religious institutions in the communities they serve. He was the first to define this concept and practice in his book, “Community Policing: Comparative Perspectives and Prospects.” The IACP resolution adopted his definition with minor modifications.
“Community policing encourages partnerships among police agencies, elected officials and the citizens we serve, a collective wisdom that helps develop comprehensive approaches to factors that contribute to criminal behavior and the fear of crime,” said Peachtree City Police Chief Janet Moon, president of GACP. “We believe it helps provide a more unified and successful approach to policing.”
Robert R. Friedmann
Professor Emeritus of Criminal Justice, Founding Director of the Georgia International Law Enforcement Exchange