Can Community Policing be used to improve public perception of the Police and how has this been affected in times of austerity?

Masters Thesis


Mcilwain, C. 2021. Can Community Policing be used to improve public perception of the Police and how has this been affected in times of austerity? Masters Thesis Canterbury Christ Church University School of Law, Policing and Social Sciences
AuthorsMcilwain, C.
TypeMasters Thesis
Qualification nameMSc by Research
Abstract

There have been many studies looking at the huge impact that austerity has had on community policing and how
this is impacting on relationships between the police and the public. The majority of these studies have been
conducted within large metropolitan police forces, this study aims to look at the effect that austerity has had on
police – public relationships within one of the smallest police forces in the country.
Using both online surveys and face to face interviews the study looks at views of officers and staff across the
ranks of community policing as to how much of a priority they think community policing is currently within the
force with the views of those at a management level differing greatly from frontline officers and staff - while
everyone agrees that it is an important part of modern day policing many of those on the front line do not see
that they are treated as such.

The study looks at how community policing teams are attempting to rebuild relationships with local
communities that have previously been damaged as a result of budget cuts and the barriers that the teams are
facing as well as the use of a dedicated community cohesion team in order to provide the visible presence craved
by local communities.

Lastly the study looks at how austerity has impacted on community policing, following a HMICFRS report
deeming Bedfordshire as inadequate there had been a drive to populate community teams meaning that views on
the effects of austerity may by distorted, officers and staff who had been part of community policing before
budget cuts began see things very differently to the newer officers drafted in to the repair the damage caused
with longer serving officers fearing that the damage could be beyond repair.

KeywordsCommunity Policing; Public perception of the Police; Austerity
Year2021
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Publication process dates
Deposited16 May 2022
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https://repository.canterbury.ac.uk/item/91183/can-community-policing-be-used-to-improve-public-perception-of-the-police-and-how-has-this-been-affected-in-times-of-austerity

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