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Posted by: urt8sant39 (IP Logged)
Date: May 21, 2017 12:49PM

By Dale Andrews  Our previous discussion centered on a typology of resistance factors which impact on efforts to reform police forces, with a focus on the current reforms purportedly underway in the Guyana Police Force (GPF).  Some 10 factors were examined briefly with consideration to the constraints of space, albeit with an attempt to align them contextually with the local experience.Interventions to reform police forces have been made manifest in a variety of ways. One of the primary objectives has been the drive to win the hearts and minds of the people who the police are mandated to protect and serve.  What is noticeable in most of the reform scenarios is the fact that the community-policing philosophy was the main plank which guided all efforts.A word of caution is necessary at this juncture with respect to the concept of community-policing as practiced in Guyana and the model implemented elsewhere. The way community-policing was structured in this country involved the participation of residents in patrolling their communities as a crime prevention measure.  This mechanism was considered necessary in view of the chronic shortage of regular police ranks and patrol vehicles, and in light of unabated calls for assistance.In other jurisdictions, this measure is rolled out with the active involvement of police ranks themselves working in cooperation with communities to solve problems, and as a principal way of doing business.  Currently in Guyana there has been no serious attempt to link the local community-policing practice with the spate of social experiments that seems to be the new thrust of the GPF. Continued non-association of the two complementary policing methodologies can only lead to mismatching and underutilisation of perpetually scarce resources both in the community and the GPF.In discussing the relationship between the executive and the police, the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) accepted that ?In any democracy the ultimate responsibility for ensuring public safety and security lies with the people?s representatives, specifically the Home (Affairs) Minister.?  This comment reflects the current dilemma faced by the Minister of Home Affairs as articulated by the CHRI grouping that ?A careful balance has to be struck between legitimate ?supervision? of the police by the political executive and illegitimate interference and influence.?Minister Rohee?s frustration at the obdurate posture on the part of the GPF executives in moving the reform process forward has to be seen in the context of the far-reaching implications with regards to citizens? expectations of policing.The CHRI addresses that concern by stating that ?? the police must always remain accountable to elected politicians for enforcing the law and to perform its duties in accordance with the law.?  That view, which obviously takes into account the Minister?s responsibility for issuing policy directives for reform of the GPF,[url=$%&/]Cheap Jerseys From China[/url], brings into the public spotlight the possibility that the GPF does not intend to function in an environment of accountability, and will resist all efforts to operate within such a framework.As mentioned early in Part I, there is no indication at present of how the GPF desires to see itself, or how it intends to operate, or expects to be perceived by the public whose general safety and security interests it is required to protect.  The reform programme in whatever form must be substantive; outlining the expected outcomes or impacts, so that all can be reassured that serious thought has gone into the changes necessary for the GPF to recover its self-respect and be accorded the respect of all and sundry.To that end, all who come into contact with the reformed GPF must be assured of a police service that is accountable, politically autonomous, law-abiding,[url=$%&/]Cheap NFL Jerseys China[/url], humane,[url=$%&/]Jerseys From China[/url], closely integrated into and responsive to the civilian community, and is adequately trained,[url=$%&/]Cheap Jerseys From China[/url], equipped, and rewarded.  By adopting the key concept of strategic planning, the GPF can achieve significant movement along a posture continuum ranging from reactive to proactive.The fact that the GPF has not defined its concept of reform makes it doubly difficult for the public to determine whether its expectations are being, or will be met.  Moreover, it is highly unlikely that the police themselves know what those expectations are.For convenience, we will use the working definition of reform used by Tania Pinc Police Reform: a determinant of democracy?s development (2010) viz ?police reform is defined as the change in police institutions in order to improve police performance and to make or maintain the performance under the law and the democratic principles.?Having attempted an understanding of the factors which lend themselves to reform collapse,[url=$%&/]NFL Cheap Jerseys China[/url], we will now move on to what promotes reform success.In June 1992 John Eck, Associate Director of Research at the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) declared that he ??also had the dubious honor of working with a few law enforcement practitioners who seem determined to sabotage innovation ? that ugly monster of change ? at all costs.?  A cynical Eck was at the time giving 10 suggestions of how Police Chiefs, stuck in a traditional time warp, can undermine community policing.  These make for interesting reading since with a bit of tweaking there are some strong similarities with what obtains in the relationship between the GPF and the concept in Guyana.  (See his tenure as Chief of North Carolina?s Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD) from 1999 to 2008, Darrel Stephens ensured that problem-oriented policing elements were ?incorporated ?into performance reviews, the promotions process, departmental awards, and technology systems? as part of the process towards changing the organizational culture.As previously stated the GPF has not been forthcoming with its vision for reform, which, if available, would assure the Guyanese people of their seriousness of intent.  Ikerd and Trent suggest that the people need to know answers to the following:i. What do the officers and other ranks know about the reform?  Reform has not been institutionalized if they are ignorant of the programme, or are unable to describe its basic elements;ii. What are the members? attitudes toward reform?  Again there is no institutionalising if they don?t like it, or are cynical about it because it is all talk but no real support for the programme;iii. Do the members? behaviour reflect the reform?  This need not detain us;iv. Has the reform been incorporated into force policies and procedures?  It goes without saying that without progressive policies and procedures to sustain reform the programme will not survive.  The GPF remains reliant on virtually archaic Standing Orders; empirically these do not reflect any consideration for evolutionary management and operational practices.Among the approaches that the GPF might wish to employ in its efforts to re-socialise its members in changing the culture of the Force are: revised training, developing coherent and logical promotional guidelines,[url=$%&/]Wholesale China Jerseys[/url], performance evaluations, and what knowledge, attitudes and behaviours are expected in support of the mission statement.Expanding on the available techniques to secure cultural buy-in and success in the reform programme the CMPD assessment findings highlighted inter alia:Effective planning – by using data to guide the change process the organization is better placed to plan and determine what it will look like with successful institutionalization.  In that regard, a reorganization and planning committee or change management team should be formed to think through the change process.There is no significant evidence that the Guyana Police Association, the Police Wives? Association which the current GPF administration in a fit of pique sent packing, the conveniently created but now defunct Association of Police Officers, or even the Ex-Police Association are involved in any meaningful way to assist in mobilization and facilitation of their membership to achieve successful outcomes. Revised training and retreats, which focus on moving members away from old stereotypes to knowing and practicing the specific functions of the police reform programme.By incorporating elements of the reform programme in recruit and in-service training would ensure that culture change and the efforts to achieve those objectives are disseminated throughout the organization.  However, training outside of serious consideration to ensure that the police are paid a realistic livable salary would be like throwing pearls to swine, if there are no monetary and non-monetary incentives to professional and ethical reform.Revised promotion standards and performance evaluations would assist in doing away with traditional performance measures and evaluation and reinforces the message that the old ways of doing things are over.  The current static mindset ignores the reality that in the absence of clearly defined expectations members may not know what is required of them in support of the culture change.To retain a less than transparent system which virtually places people?s promotional prospects in the hands of two individuals, as obtains in the GPF, is tantamount to saying that you just have to abide without resort to any higher authority.(To be continued)

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