Sheriff's Message History

Community Policing? What's that?

January 06, 2004

You will often hear that a police agency in your area is engaged in "community policing", but many people don't really understand what that means. Community policing occurs when a Sheriff's Office or a Police Department works in collaboration with the community to enhance efforts to keep the community a safe, wonderful place to live and raise a family. But, the key word here is "enhance". It is truly incumbent upon every citizen to maintain a safe and orderly neighborhood and to work with those stakeholders who share a common interest in the quality of life in that community. Your Sheriff's Office is but one of those stakeholders. There are many others who live, work, or service that community in one way or another. Community policing is the process by which those stakeholders come together and decide on a plan of action for meeting the needs of the neighborhood for the good of all involved. Commitments from those stakeholders for doing their part to achieve the desired outcomes for the community come with that plan of action. And to tell you the truth, it is the little things that make the biggest difference. Simple things like cleaning up litter, driving courteously, knowing and helping our neighbors, and getting involved in community events, service clubs and organizations that truly set the tone of a community. The Broken Windows Theory refers to those little things in a community that go uncorrected such as a broken window at an abandoned building or a pile of trash on the side of the road that shows a lack of community concern or interest. This disinterest leads to more and more degradation or erosion in that community. You may have seen evidence of this yourself in once nicely kept, caring neighborhoods that over a span of time have become run down in appearance and less desirable a place to raise a family. It doesn't have to be that way. I encourage all of you to get involved. Be a part of your community. Don't just be a spectator, get in the game! You will have much more fun and you will be helping make your community a better place to live each and every day.

We at the Charlotte County Sheriff's Office are committed to providing the safest possible environment for our citizens. Our values and goals drive our ambitious agenda to promote peace, strengthen the community, and enhance the quality of life. Through our partnership with the community, we embrace the community's involvement with crime control, public safety and establishing the quality of life we all want in beautiful Charlotte County. Thank you all for your help and for your commitment to being a great community partner!


Sheriff William Cameron

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