Lifecycle Initiative Toolkit

Good Practices on Community Engagement and Community-Oriented Policing as tools to Counter Violent Extremism

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In its efforts to counter violent extremism, the GCTF has highlighted the importance of multi-sectoral approaches that involve government and non-government agencies, the private sector, religious leaders, and civil society. Specifically, the GCTF emphasized the importance of understanding and addressing community needs as a way to tackle violent extremism.  A critical component of this community level engagement is community-oriented policing, which is collaboration between the police and the community that identifies and solves community problems. 

By taking the time to engage with community members and involve them in all relevant policing and public safety efforts, law enforcement officers can play a pivotal role in identifying and countering violent extremist ideologies and behaviors and increase the likelihood of a successful CVE program.

Because in-person radicalization to violence takes place primarily at the local level, CVE initiatives should be implemented at a local level via community engagement and community-oriented policing. These tools accentuate opportunities for trust-building between communities and policing agencies, setting the foundation for an enduring partnership that is transparent, information-driven, and adaptive. Good practices to achieve such a rapport begin with a long-term mindset, established methods to build trust, inclusive engagement efforts, and a holistic approach.

Involving women and youth as change agents further entrenches the message—along with a community liaison, former violent extremists, and victims of violent extremists—diverse sectors of the community can create and amplify powerful counter-narratives that drown out those of violent extremists. Finally, policing agencies should train communities to identify indicators of violent extremist behavior, delineate metrics to measure effectiveness, and acknowledge that involving any local community means honoring the ensuing relationship with transparency, respect, integrity, and open-mindedness.

Sector: Government Institutions, NGOs, Civil Society, Communities, Families, Academia,
Theme: Community Policing, Women and CVE, Families and CVE, Juvenile Justice,
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