American Indian reservations are experiencing an increase in the amount of crimes in their communities. One of the major reasons why is the lack of manpower in their police forces. In major U.S. cities, there is at least a 3.9 ratio of officers per thousand residents, and on the reservations only a few “departments in Indian Country have ratios of more than 2 officers per thousand residents” (Wakeling, 2001). American Indian police cannot properly prevent crime without being able to properly respond to incidents. This stems from issues internal to the departments. Apparently there have been issues with poor management, pay, and strong political influence on how the departments should operate as well (Wakeling, 2001).
Community Policing is a guide that helps police departments use partnerships and problem-solving techniques to address crime, social disorder, and the communities fear of crime (United States, 2014). One aspect of community policing is building collaborative partnerships with members of the community. Wakeling, Jorgenson, and Michaelson had a terrific idea and suggested that “a local elder could accompany a responding officer” (2001). The elders in a community are seen and treated with a lot of respect and could provide more influence for the officer and a positive outcome to the situation at hand. Another aspect of community policing is organizational transformation. An officer’s integrity stems from the values put forth by their department. The organization needs to figure out ways to boost morale, pay, and retention rates. Community policing is not a full-proof way to fix all issues, it serves as a mere guideline to improve policing in general. However, I do not believe there are any downfalls to utilizing community policing in Indian Country
United States. Department of Justice. Office of Community Oriented Policing Services. (2014, January 1). Community policing defined . Homeland Security Digital Library. Retrieved May 8, 2022, from https://www.hsdl.org/?abstract&did=766797
Wakeling, S., Jorgenson, M., & Michaelson, S. (2001, January). Policing on American Indian Reservations. National Institute of Justice Journal, 2–7. https://doi-org.ezproxy.snhu.edu/10.1037/e527932006-002