Cities Developing One Public Safety Organization as Whole New Way to Combine Police, Fire, Crime Prevention, Emergency, & All City Services

PUBLIC SAFETY & SECURITY 

SITUATION:
Communities need & want protection, prevention, public safety, and policing.
There are efforts in some states & cities to defund & reduce police departments.
Meantime several cities have created combined public safety departments as solution.
Consolidating police, fire, & emergency medical services into one dept–Not defunding Police.
Lack of research in public safety cross-training has hindered integration

SIGNIFICANCE:
Department of Public Safety (DPS), to become one single integrated civic unit.
Integration (or consolidation) means taking on the cross-training personnel.
City officials perform the multiple functions that are required.
Police officers, firefighters, & emergency medical technicians (EMT) or paramedics cross trained
Cross-training usually limited to functions directly related to law enforcement.
Fire or medical incident teams support police officers performing  only security or basic first aid.

SOLUTION:

To Accomplish a Public Safety Organization: [Advocated by Bill Bratton, Former NYC Police Commissioner)
Needs Leadership, Upgraded Selection Process, & Retraining [Upskilling]

What a Combined Public Safety & Police Department Looks Like:

CITY Services that are being provided by Combined Public Safety Department:

Administration of New Combined Department:

New department shares administrative support staff and back-office functions, z
Sworn personnel remain specialized and have particular responsibilities.
The Police continue to arrest people and the firefighters put out fires.
Police officersfirefighters and/or EMTs, cross trained.
Responds to emergencies in any capacity as one single unit.
Works best when based on the community’s character, composition, size, geographic location, & existing programs

Several cities that are combining Police & Fire & Services into Public Safety Dept:
Austin Tx
The DPS of Cobb County, Georgia
Sunnyvale CA
Newark NJ
Albuquerque NM
Kalamazoo, Michigan
Walker, MI
Indianapolis,
Mecklenburg County, North Carolina.

SOURCES:
A Package Deal: Police, Fire, and EMS All in Onehttps://www.policechiefmagazine.org/a-package-deal-police-fire-and-ems/

 Public Safety Consolidation: Does it Make Sense? – https://leb.fbi.gov/articles/perspective/perspective-public-safety-consolidation-does-it-make-sense

International City/County Management Association  – Marc A. Ott is executive director, 800.745.8780;  customerservices@icma.org

Cintya Flores, ICMA | 202-962-3692 | cflores@icma.org 

EXPERT RESOURCES:
Dr. Susan M. Hilal, Associate Professor, Metropolitan State University School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice, Brooklyn Park, Minnesota
David Squier Jones, Research Assistant, Metropolitan State University School of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice, Brooklyn Park, Minnesota

 

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