The Seven Principles of Policing
The police have the most serious and the most dangerous responsibility in ensuring the public safety and protection of every individual against all forms of crimes. Their principal duties are the prevention and detection of crime, the protection of life and property, and the enforcement of law to maintain peace and good order.
Youngstown Accord recognized the seven principles of democratic policing, this principles discusses ways in which it helps in determining and establishing the true and genuine nature of policing, and to reflect on the challenge ascertain to democratic policing by promising crime growth.
The first principle, “Basic Values”, the police should pursue excellence individually and corporately and uphold professional standards. The police must be united and work according to the values and principles of democracy. These means that in an operational perspective, police should be trained in the law; they should understand international standards of human rights and must act according to criminal code. The written police policies should be available to the public and that written policies should rule such police procedures and operations. In other words, the organization, implementation and articulation of all the police activities, actions and behaviors should be done accordingly to the rule of law.
The second principle of democratic policing, “Staff”, Police officers are voluntarily employ on the basis of their individual aptitudes and professional potential. The composition of an effective police service reflects the diversity of the population. Conditions of service, working practices and legal remedies are described in laws, regulations and codes of practice. The internal police culture uses the best qualities of its individuals. Staff policy is based on transparent, non-discriminating and objective criteria. The police as the one trusted by the people, should be considered as specialize and experts whose deeds must be in accordance by the code of professional conduct. This code is more than just a set of simple rules, it was made to be able to rule the people, this code and the rules it holds should be perform in the highest ethical values, and should serves as the basis upon taking an action on disciplining or punishing for misconduct.
The third principle, “Training”, Training consists of basic training and continuous in-service training. It represents an investment for the future of the service and the staff themselves. Training enables police officers to provide an efficient, effective and ethical police service to the communities they serve. Training needs must also be identified by operational personnel. For all kinds of training, review procedures must exist. The Law enforcement’s and the police first priority were to respond to crimes and to assure public safety. Police must keep in mind that their highest priority was the protection of life. This principle applies for the police use of force. The police use of deadly force must incorporate only when they are at risk of losing lives. This use of the said force has been agreed by the participants to undergo to an investigation to be able to determine if they meet the standard as well as their priorities.
Fourth, “Management Practice”, Management practice must promote an ethos of empowerment, support and personal development of individuals Management practice must conform to laws and statutory regulations. They must be open to scrutiny, internally as well as externally. Management practices have to leave room for its public to influence cultural changes within the force, if necessary Management practices must allow senior leaders to be aware of both good and poor practice through early warning systems and be prepared to make changes quickly. Management should support the principle of local police officers solving local issues in partnerships with the community’s they serve. The conduct of police officers and the ways in which this is managed complies with and promotes the Service’s basic values, and welcomes constructive criticism. Serving the community is the primary role and the duty of the police”, therefore the police have to consider liable and accountable to the community that they are serving. This principle was designed in order to provide transparencies to police operations as well as to disseminate crime reports. It was also intended to meet the needs of the citizens whenever they are in need of police assistance
Fifth, “Operational Policing”, Consideration of the principles of human rights legislation should be contained within policy logs, operational procedures and reports, as well as tactical briefing and debriefing. Operational plans and policies should be directed by clear objectives that are properly measured and lawfully achieved. Police officers should enhance community safety by responding to the needs of victims and witnesses; by cooperating with other partners and agencies, and the community; and by demonstrating commitment to vulnerable groups.
Sixth, “Structure”, the structure of the service should support the service objectives according to the fundamental principles of human rights legislation. The police activities should be done with due respect to human dignity and must be practice with regards to the basic human rights. The execution of torture and other cruel and degrading treatment should be forbidden, the officers are expected also to report all suspected instances of human rights violation. Police officers therefore must respect the rights of every individual.
Finally, “Accountability”, Police accountability and transparency can be measured through internal and external review; through public, political and legal measures, and can be reinforced through restitution or damages against the Service and individual officers. It is expected the every police officers do their duties in an equal manner wherein they shall not show discrimination or bias of any kind. Police service delivery must be independent of race, sex and religion and should be suited with policing in a democratic state. It is also important that police officers are responsible and professional enough when it comes to serving as well as in arresting suspected citizens of the country regardless of who they are and what they are.
The responsibilities of police officers in maintaining a free country can clearly be seen and well stated in the seven principles. Now, police must rule the law that governs the state that they are serving as well as to be transparent in their own conducts and activities. Every citizen in the state must also be treated fairly and valued along with their life and dignity. Also, it is important that law enforcers and the community that they are serving must be united and must work together to achieve a common goal; to make the states a better and safer place to live. Law enforcement police officers and the community as well, must work together to solve contemporary problems such as crime as well as the overall neighborhood decay.
No single component should be considered in isolation. They are not mutually exclusive but rather are intended to overlap. The basic value components should be seen as an umbrella which covers the entire document to encourage not only a better policing operations, but more considerations of how we recruit, employ and treat staff, How we determine training needs and how we cooperate with account to the public and others, with providing justice and peace. Each component is described by a statement which reflects, in our opinion, what are generally agreed to be the principles of professional policing in a democratic society. There is an aspiration element to these statements that tells us what a good police service, incompliance with human rights, should look like. For example, a description of basic values includes terms such as upholding the Rule of Law, consideration of the views of the community on police performance and the ability of the police to change.
Travis, J, (July 10 2007). Policing in transition. Retrieved January 26, 2008 from