We will enhance policing and crime prevention programs through partnerships between police and local communities. The term “community policing” has become controversial in some instances, but it is in fact a common sense approach to law enforcement that many cities and towns implement without fanfare. Police departments that practice community-based techniques recognize that police alone cannot deal with neighborhood safety and livability issues, but instead must partner with citizens, businesses, organizations, schools, churches, and others to build safe environments.

Community-based programs establish personal relationships and trust between police and residents. Some police departments describe this approach as a “value system” or even “a way of life” as opposed to a program. In Oklahoma City, effective neighborhood policing will involve greater outreach to residents and businesses, interaction with organizations, working relationships with property owners, and other cooperative efforts. A critical support element will involve direct work with at-risk youth and adequate funding for job training, education, and leadership development programs.