The Village of Greenwood Lake is accepting public comment until Monday, March 15, on its draft “community policing collaborative strategy.”
The strategy is in response to a state mandate for “reinvention” of all local police departments.
Communities that don’t complete such reform plans by April 1 could lose state aid. In addition, Governor Andrew Cuomo’s 2021-22 budget proposal provides for the appointment of monitors by the Attorney General, at localities’ expense, to ensure that the reviews are conducted and “community voices are heard.”
Officers ‘embrace a guardian mindset’
Greenwood Lake’s plan pledges “to ensure that all officers embrace a guardian mindset” as opposed to the stance of a warrior out to conquer everyone he or she encounters. It contains numerous recommendations and aspirational goals organized in six “pillars:”
Building trust and legitimacy;
Policy and oversight;
Technology and social media;
Community policing and crime reduction;
Training and education; and
Officer well-being and safety.
The village also agency says it will seek accreditation, a seal of approval from the state that provides formal recognition that a department meets or exceeds general expectations of quality in the policing field. Seven of Orange County’s 32 law enforcement agencies are currently accredited, although others may seek the status as part of the reinvention process.
In addition, the department says it will “strive” to create an oversight committee to review officer-involved shootings and other serious incidents. ‘‘The purpose of the board will be to identify any administrative, supervisory, training, tactical or policy issues that need to be addressed.”
The village’s plan can be viewed at https://www.villageofgreenwoodlake.org/community-policing-collaborative-strategy/
- Jeff Storey