Friday, July 29, 2011

Getting The Most Out Of Your Beat Meeting

Getting The Most Out Of Your Beat Meeting

What Is the Beat Meeting?
Beat meetings are regular (every other month) meetings, held on all 279 beats in the city, where police and community residents meet to exchange information about conditions in the neighborhood, identify crime and disorder problems, and develop strategies to combat those problems.

Why Are Beat Meetings Important?
The purpose of the beat meeting is to allow beat residents, other stakeholders, and police to discuss problem solving using the CAPS 5-step problem-solving process. It also provides an opportunity for them to get to know one another.

Who Conducts the Meeting?
Beat meetings are hosted by the Chicago Police Department and are usually conducted in one of three ways:
1) by a team consisting of a resident beat facilitator (community contact person) and a beat officer.
2) by one or more beat facilitators.
3) by one or more beat officers.
Option 1 is usually considered ideal.
* Beat meetings and problem solving are most effective when they include a broad range of community stakeholders: residents, business owners, and representatives from local schools, churches and neighborhood organizations.

Become Informed Decision-makers
Most of us relate to the crime and disorder problems that are most visible--abandoned cars, parking-related problems, street drug dealing, gang members hanging out, etc. But many of the crime problems on the beat tend to be "invisible", unless we ore our family or friends have been a victim. At each meeting, ask for a beat team presentation on the current crime conditions on the beat. This includes the distribution of the "Top Ten" charts or crime maps. This will ensure you have the whole crime picture before you decide which problems to attack. Once you become aware of all the problems, you may have information that would be helpful to residents and police as they analyze the problems and work on solutions.

Be Prepared to Identify and Discuss Chronic Problems
In determining what to discuss at the meeting, ask the following questions about the problem:
1) Is it of concern to a number of residents/the beat team?
2) Is it likely to go away on its own?
3) Does it persist or return despite traditional law enforcement efforts?
4) Is it something that community, police and City agencies can impact with available resources?

Schedule Problem Solving Training for Your Beat
Contact the Community Education Section of the Chicago Police Department's Education and Training Division, Monday-Friday between 8:00am and 4:00pm, at 312-746-8310.

For More Information:
For more information about how to get involved in community policing in your neighborhood, call: 312-744-CAPS or TTY 312-744-8599.

Visit the CAPS Website at:
When you visit the Chicago Police Department's website you can:
* Learn what district and beat you live in
* Find your beat meeting schedule
* Obtain district contact information
* Read CAPS success stories
* Report drug activity anonymously
* Register your bicycle
* Learn more about CAPS


bobbo said...

But from what I've seen very few actually go to beat meetings.

Marc Sollinger said...

Hello Timmy,

My name's Marc Sollinger and I'm a producer at Chicago Public Media. I've been reading your blog for a while, and I would really like to do a story about you. It would look into how the blog is made, why you started it, and how it affects your day-to-day life. Would you be interested in being interviewed? If so, what times are good for?

Thanks so much, and please let me know your decision,
Marc Sollinger

Isabela said...

I agree, not too many go to the meetings. Our beat gets no more then 10 people attending tops.

AvondaleLoganSquareCrimeBlotter said...

bobbo, and Isabella, that's true. Hopefully that will change soon.

Hello, Marc. Because of my family having major financial problems right now, I cannot open myself to interviews at this time. Although, as soon as our situation improves (in a few months or so, hopefully), I will be open for interviews and will let you know when you can interview me.

ProdigalOne said...

I suspect that beat meetings with active participants result from neighborhoods who are organized in block clubs and working day-to-day to make the neighborhoods great places to live.

Instead of taking the same complaints to a meeting that never seem to get solved, active neighbors are reporting progress on problems that are being worked out everyday in cooperation with the police. That's what a good neighborhood-police alliance is really all about.

Area 2 said...

Timmy, instead of going to so many community meetings have you ever considered a part time job?

AvondaleLoganSquareCrimeBlotter said...

Area 2, yes, I have, and I'm actually looking for a job right now. It's not easy though. I've applied for a few places and no one's called me back. Besides, what's the problem with me attending a lot of the community meetings?

victor franko says said...

the hell with timmy, do a movie on the best district in the city of chicago 025

AvondaleLoganSquareCrimeBlotter said...

Victor, the hell with you too, and if you think 25 is the best District in the city, I'm sorry to say that you have issues. And are sadly mistaken.