Psychology

Community-based policing

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Science  18 Oct 2019:
Vol. 366, Issue 6463, pp. 321-322
DOI: 10.1126/science.366.6463.321-e

Proponents of community-based policing argue that positive nonenforcement experiences with police enhance citizens' trust and belief in the legitimacy of policing. Peyton et al. conducted a randomized field experiment to determine whether a single positive interaction could improve attitudes toward police. Police were trained in positive engagement strategies and assigned to talk with citizens for 10 minutes in a nonenforcement capacity. Surveys that were administered later found that citizens who had talked to officers held more positive attitudes toward the police 3 days and 21 days after those conversations compared with citizens who did not speak with an officer. These results have implications for improving relationships between citizens and police.

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 116, 19894 (2019).

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