Community Resource Teams and Their Impact on at Risk Youth

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Community oriented policing is the proactive deployment method used by patrol officers in order to find solutions to why crime is occurring within a given community. Officers use their critical thinking and problem solving skills to analyze and uncover the underlying issues of a community that are posing threats to public safety and address ways this can be prevented. In many communities throughout the United States, police officers strive to build better relationships with community members, yet building relationships with youth within a community, especially a community over run by gangs, crime and drugs is a much tougher issue. These juveniles are at higher risk for entering into the juvenile justice system based on the many risk factors prevalent in their personal lives and communities and typically their view of police officers is negative. A juveniles view of police is heavily influenced by many environmental variables and their commitment to any alternate subculture (Jackson, 2002). In order for police to change the way the juveniles view them, it is imperative to intervene through the use of aggressive community policing. Community resource teams offer a variety of programs and opportunities for officers to mentor, support and encourage this fragile subculture, improving relationships between the youth and police, deterring at risk behavior and ultimately protecting community safety.
The core value of community policing is to engage the community and enable them to feel safe. It is important for police to get to know the area they are servicing and to get acquainted with members of the community; residents, business owners and government officials. Getting to know the area and its general population, officers can ask quest...

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