By Saul Roth
The future of public safety in America is shaping up to be a lot different than it used to be. Technology has grown exponentially over the past few decades, and this trend will continue.
The recent nationwide protests and public unrest have been a huge challenge for law enforcement agencies. With COVID-19, they’ve had to deal with an additional problem that is causing strain on their departments in more ways than one can imagine: decline of goodwill toward police coupled with the rise of the violent crime rate which has lead many citizens not only to lose faith, but to also fear officers who are trying desperately hard to do what’s right, while being put under tremendous pressure from all sides.
A few years ago, we saw how critical it was when tragedies like officer involved shootings happen; however, now things seem worse because there’s no respect whatsoever.
The use of unarmed civilians to respond during traffic stops has come under fire. Some cities restrict when officers can stop drivers for minor infractions, while others prohibit them altogether in order to not disrupt public safety by engaging with those who may have been driving responsibly until they commit crimes.
Civilians working as “community ambassadors” make contact near buildings where there are high rates of burglaries. These people wear plain clothes so that nobody knows what role exactly they represent at any given time.
In order to attract and retain job applicants, agencies need a modern workplace that includes functional facilities with intuitive technology. They also must prioritize social responsibility through diversity and inclusion in their organizations.
With a wealth of information just one tap away, modern mobile technologies have given police officers the tools they need to be more aware and efficient in their work.
The use of mobile technologies in law enforcement has made it possible for officers to document their work without returning back to base. This allows them to finish reports faster, and spend more time out in the field, making communities safer places.
In recent years, there has been a push for state’s attorney generals to conduct their own investigations and use consent decrees. This is likely due in part from calls made by federal agencies like the U.S Department of Justice, who want more power when it comes down to distributing justice within each individual department under them.
With the rapid changes in society and technology, public safety agencies are responding with a new approach to protecting their communities. Though there is no shortage of challenges for law enforcement today – from rising crime rates all across America’s cities; an increase within some marginalized groups targeted by criminals, such as Hispanics or African Americans, who have been victims themselves.