Police Officers confront criminals, the mentally ill, and now potential terrorists, while serving in multiethnic, pluralistic, and linguistically diverse communities. Omnipresent is the reality that their
lives are at risk.
Police Academies prepare police for self-protection; train them in law enforcement and community surveillance. Then police are sent to communities that are often hostile to them.
The hostility is derived from the ‘experience’ of minority communities that feel besieged by police; e.g., Stop and Frisk. Minority sons and fathers have had ‘the talk’ to prevent them from the ‘pernicious’ police.
In such an atmosphere of mistrust and rancor, what can be done to pull back from the “tipping point” of violence, revenge or anarchy, which may be perceived or real? How can an environment of trust, reconciliation, and respect be developed?
The training of police with community leaders in cultural competence to enhance community relations is a start.
For more than thirty years, Nichols and Associates, has successfully conducted Cultural Competence Workshops for Police Officers, Law Enforcement Officers, and Judicial Authorities.