According to the 2010 Census, 37% of the U.S. population reported their race and ethnicity as something other than “non-Hispanic White alone.” The numbers of people of color have increased by almost 30% between 2000 and 2010, and by 2060, they will make up nearly 60% of the country. Our country is diversifying rapidly and, despite their best efforts, law enforcement often struggle to build trust and partnerships across communities with different languages, cultures, and customs. There is a need to bridge the gap between what is recommended as good police practice and what is implemented in the field. This guidebook series seeks to fill that gap. To improve relations between police and the communities they serve, this three-part guide series—written for police, by police—highlights practical, field-informed approaches to building trust with multiracial and multi-ethnic communities.
In an increasingly diverse America, and a time of enhanced public scrutiny, it is more important than ever for police to build trust and lasting relationships in their communities. This guide series offers field-tested tools and tips—written by police, for police—to build trust effectively.
Recruiting a diverse workforce is a key ingredient in assembling an agency that can be most responsive to community needs. Every police department should be expected to have a competent, professional workforce that is responsive and accountable to the community it serves—as well as reflective of it.
Policing in the 21st century means preparing police agencies to serve increasingly diverse multicultural populations, including immigrant, refugee, youth, and transgender communities.
Understanding the history of policing in the U.S., as well as an agency’s historic relationship with the community it serves, can help officers seeking to implement community-informed policing strategies.
According to the 2010 Census, approximately 40 million foreign-born people now live in the United States, making up roughly 13 percent of the total U.S. population.
In about one-tenth of all counties in the United States, people of color constitute 50 percent or more of the total population.
In a 2011 national review of nearly 200 law enforcement agencies claiming to have good police-immigrant relations, Vera identified only 19 with programs focusing on non-Latino immigrants.
A national survey conducted with nearly 6,500 transgender and gender nonconforming individuals revealed that nearly half of the survey respondents (46 percent) reported being reluctant to seek police assistance.
Between 2000 and 2010, more than two-thirds of U.S. states saw their foreign-born populations increase by at least 30 percent.