Sand Springs Listens To Community Input For New Policing Plan
SAND SPRINGS, Oklahoma - Community policing is taking on a new meaning in Sand Springs - for the second year, the community is helping write police plans.
The Sand Springs police chief said policing is an evolving job and that what worked in the past may not work today. That's why they plan to issue a new policing plan every year.
"I think it's basically their job already to go out and talk to the public and seek out initiative," resident Greg Radmer said.
When police take to the streets in Sand Springs, they are taking more than just years of experience with them, they are taking the combined input of the community.
The community helped develop a new 23-page policing plan. Many of the ideas were submitted to the department through specialized one-on-one meetings with officers.
"We need the public to let us know what's important to them," Chief Mike Carter said.
Last year the plan called for officers to undergo implicit bias training. With that skill set, officers will now undergo advanced mental health training and more.
"We're going to have every officer trained by 2018 in de-escalation," Carter said.
The chief said the plan will also focus on community policing efforts, use of force, traffic enforcement and body cameras.
Radmer said, "I think it'll prevent some of the issues we have or may not have on the street."
Within the past year, the police department has dramatically cut its traffic citations and lowered the amount of time minor offenders stay in jail.
Carter said the new method doesn't mean they'll be soft on crime, but means they'll be open to looking at more viable solutions.
“If we can get anything out of this, I want people to understand agencies are moving in a correct direction," Carter said.
The chief will present the plan to the city council next month for approval.