If you work in law enforcement, do you work at a police precinct that has a strained relationship with the community? In order to get the residents to think positively about you, trust you and help you in your criminal investigations, you need to form a bond with them. You will learn how you and your fellow law enforcement officials can improve your relations with the community.
You should allow the residents to form a civilian board that oversees your department and investigates complaints that involve you. One thing this will do is allow the residents to possibly discover for themselves what really happened in a particular incident involving a suspect that took place in the area. Another thing this should do is persuade them to establish confidence in you. It will be easier to earn their trust if you do not hide.
It is crucial to treat everyone you encounter with respect. You should never call them names or curse them out. Also, you should not raise your voice at them unless they are belligerent or refuse to comply with your commands. By staying calm and displaying courtesy, you will make things easier and more pleasant for yourself and those you serve.
It is helpful to get the residents to see what a day on the job is like for you. One way you can do it is to let them ride with you on your patrols. Another is to explain that you might sometimes have to use force on suspects because they are resisting arrest and throwing punches at you. Once the people in your community see that you often deal with people spitting or taking swings at you, they will no longer hesitate to give you the benefit of the doubt when the media covers a story on the police using force on a suspect.
You should help the residents form a neighborhood watch. This will give you an easy opportunity to work with them. It will also help you prevent burglaries and other crimes in the area.
It is also smart to live in the area. The first thing this will do is enable you to become familiar with the residents on a personal basis. The second is it will enable you to quickly help them in an emergency. The third is it will let them know that you do not think you are too good to live with them.
You should occasionally patrol on foot or bicycle. It will enable you to say hi to everyone that comes your way and help them see you as their friend. It will also make it less intimidating for them to approach you and let you know if something bad is happening.
It is vital to display fairness and compassion. You can do this by giving warnings on certain offenses such as speeding and trespassing and treating all offenders the same. You should be extra careful how you treat those who seem to be mentally ill.
You have learned how to improve your relations with the community as a law enforcement officer. By doing this, you will earn their trust and respect in addition to making it easier to persuade them to help you solve criminal cases.