Police2Peace is a research-driven program designed to create demonstrably positive changes in the way communities and departments view one another.
Our national non-profit was formed to demonstrate that the daily exchange and use of words creates a positive impact on communities and the officers who serve them. To do this, we work with cities and departments around the country to make the words PEACE OFFICER visible on public safety vehicles through our national PEACE OFFICER identity program.
This program is the first in a series of high impact initiatives intended to develop community engagement and lower the barriers between police and the community. Beyond PEACE OFFICER decals on vehicles, we offer a slate of more profound programs for officer wellness and citizen engagement designed the bridge the gap between law enforcement and citizens community-wide.
In departments around the country, research indicates that the way officers and citizens viewed themselves and one another changed, for example resulting in a shift in officers’ views of their work. Before the decal program, officers may report seeing their job as tamping down problems that develop; after the program, they report seeing their roles as creating peace in the community. Community members report similar shifts in their views of officers as peace keepers.
The program draws on established social science work including Priming, Language-Augmented Cognition, Social Tuning, Procedural Justice, and Cognitive Resilience Training. Each of these techniques contributes to the successful introduction of PEACE OFFICER into the community’s law enforcement identity.
Feasibility Study Completed: Redlands, CA Police Department
Beginning in December 2017, Police2Peace engaged with the Redlands, CA police department to roll out vehicles with the designation, PEACE OFFICER on each car. That department engaged with the New York University and UCLA public policy institute called BetaGov to study the impact of the change on perceptions in the community. Results released in May 2018.
Pilot Completed: Richland County, SC Sheriff’s Department
Beginning in January, 2018, the Richland County Sheriff’s department became the first sheriff organization in the country to undertake the inclusion of PEACE OFFICER on their vehicles. A random control trial was performed to gauge the effect of citizens and officers seeing PEACE OFFICER on certain vehicles while other areas of the county are in control groups where the designation does not appear. Results released in July 2018.
We Offer Departments a Turnkey Program
Once a department decides to participate in the program, they can initiate a custom research study in their city or county. We then work with them to arrange and fund the placement of new decals on squad cars. We also work with them to create awareness of this change community-wide. The department, city, state and federal government incur no expense whatsoever for the program, research and the release of the resulting studies.
Proven Results for a Change
With growing media coverage of police-citizen encounters, cities and departments increasingly desire to make changes, improve community perceptions and live up to that image. We provide tools that allow departments to grow these capacities which may be depleted after decades of what might be called, “the corrosive drip” of the profession, along with providing for citizens to feel seen, heard and valued in their communities.
Research Study: Richland County, South Carolina | Click To Download
Police2Peace is a fiscally sponsored project of the Peace Development Fund.