The biggest change to come to the Jackson Police Department wasn’t a physical one, but a philosophical one. Through a partnership with the Regional Community Policing Institute (RCPI) of Michigan State University, we committed to the adaptation of a new Community Policing Philosophy, which was a fundamental change to the way policing had been conducted. It was based on 3 core components developed through the 1990s:
A customer service organization transformation
Multiple community partnerships
Unified, data-driven problem solving
The Jackson Police Department began to incorporate these components in circumscribed situations. Community and resident police officers delivered community policing services in unique districts, acting as our specialized representatives. The next step was to build on these community policing successes.
In 1999, we partnered with the RCPI in order to facilitate the extension from a specialized approach to a comprehensive one that permeates the entire department. Such a transformation required a long-term commitment from employees, management, elected officials and, most importantly, the community. This commitment was demonstrated during the many organizational assessments and meetings with the key elected officials needed to assure this implementation succeeded. The City of Jackson was divided into 8 PACT areas in 2002, which allowed our officers to better connect with the community they serve.
New values, as well as vision and mission statements, to match the Community Policing Philosophy were developed by a cross-section of more than 20 Police Department employees. These created the high standards that we demand to assure we serve the community we are sworn to protect with the utmost regards. The challenge was, and remains, the continuing incorporation of these values to our daily operations in every way possible so that we may improve the quality of life enjoyed by all of Jackson’s citizens.