Police higher education

In recent years the UK has put an emphasis on developing higher education programs specifically for police. As an example, here’s a position announcement for a Professor of Policing Studies and Police Leadership at Liverpool John Moores University (application deadline August 13).

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Community policing challenges in South America

This article reviews some community policing successes and failures in South America. COPĀ “has become the go-to security strategy in the Americas” but implementation has rarely been sustained. In Brazil, the UPP initiative in Rio de Janeiro was credited with reducing homicides during 2008-2014 but that trend has since reversed and public trust remains low. Underlying social problems in the favelas were never addressed, police training was inadequate, and police violence remained high.

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Scooter crime wave in London

This article details a big increase in thefts of scooters and mopeds in London, along with crimes committed with such vehicles, such as street robberies. Thieves are reportedly emboldened by the knowledge that police won’t chase them at high speed on city streets. So far, the problem does not seem to be spreading to other UK cities.

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Reviewing unfounded sexual assaults

This article reports that Ottawa, Canada will adopt the “Philadelphia Model” in which a multidisciplinary panel reviews reported sexual assaults that police classify as unfounded. The main purpose is not to find specific police errors, but to identify ways of improving the system so that future decisions are based on valid criteria and victims are more satisfied that they were treated fairly.

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Mexico police over-worked, under-staffed

Police officers in Mexico officially log on average 65 hours per week, and actually work even more than that, according to this article. Staffing is uneven — Mexico City has almost 7 officers per 1,000 residents but some violence-plagued regions have fewer than 1 officer per 1,000. Previous reports have also documented widespread failure to meet hiring and training standards.

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Sustaining police reform

This article draws on experiences from Argentina, Brazil, and Colombia to identify challenges to sustaining police reform. Often, police resistance combined with “get tough” politics undermines reform, especially when activists can’t sustain their influence and public support following initial successes.

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Police service options in Canada

Municipalities in Canada have choices about how to provide police service — have their own police department, join a regional consortium, or contract with provincial police, the RCMP, or another municipality. This article reports a township in Ontario voting to end its contract with the OPP provincial police in favor of contracting with a neighboring local force. The issues are mainly level of service and cost.

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