Policing in the 21st Century

City officials play significant roles in promoting transparency and fostering trust between the community and law enforcement agencies. This guide is designed for local elected leaders offering guidance on how law enforcement officials can implement the principles of community policing. More specifically, it provides an overview of the recommendations from the President's Task Force on 21st Century Policing.

Community policing is a law enforcement strategy that emphasizes the systematic use of community engagement, partnerships, and problem solving techniques to proactively address conditions that cultivate crime and social disorder. Community policing requires cooperation among police, citizens, and local decision-makers in order to forge effective partnerships that combat criminal activity.

The President's Task Force on 21st Century Policing divides the recommendations into six pillars. They are:

  1. Building Trust and Legitimacy
  2. Policy and Oversight
  3. Technology and Social Media
  4. Community Policing and Crime Reduction
  5. Officer Training and Education
  6. Officer Safety and Wellness

About This Report

In addition to a detailed analysis of the Task Force recommendations, the guide includes short case examples from Grand Rapids, Michigan, and Montgomery County, Maryland. A list of resource agencies and funding sources, both public and nonprofit, are included by way of reference as is a sample of common community policing strategies.

Important take-away ideas from the report include:

  • Foster trust
  • Align policies with community values
  • Embrace new technologies
  • Prioritize community engagement
  • Invest in training
  • Cultivate the well-being of officers

Grant Funding Update

The COPS Office is pleased to announce that the COPS Hiring Program (CHP) grant funding solicitation is now open and accepting applications.

The 2016 COPS Hiring Program is a competitive grant program that funds the hiring or rehiring of law enforcement officers. CHP provides 75 percent of the approved entry-level salaries and fringe benefits of each newly hired and/or rehired full-time officer, up to $125,000 per officer position, over the three-year (36-month) grant period.

Applications are due by June 23, 2016 at 7:59 PM EDT.

Please click here for more information on the 2016 COPS Hiring Program.

Please contact the COPS Office Communications Division at (202) 514-9079 if you have any questions.

NLC Community Policing Guide
NLC Community Policing Guide