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Guidance for Building Communities of Trust

NCJ Number
Robert Wasserman
Date Published
February 2010
60 pages
This booklet provides guidance to law enforcement on how to best respond to criminal/terrorism activity in diverse and immigrant communities.
The Building Communities of Trust (BCOT) initiative develops relationships between law enforcement, fusion centers, and the communities they serve to address crime control and prevention of terrorism, particularly in immigrant and minority communities. This BCOT booklet provides guidance, advice, and recommendations on how to initiate and sustain trusting relationships that support meaningful sharing of information, responsiveness to community concerns and priorities, and the reporting of suspicious activities that appropriately distinguish between innocent cultural behaviors and behavior that may reflect criminal enterprise or terrorism precursor activities. Recommendations are threefold: for fusion centers, strong privacy policies and audits of center activities are required to ensure that the policies and their related standards are being fully met; for law enforcement agencies, meaningful dialog and collaboration with communities must occur in a manner that increases legitimacy of the agency in the eyes of that community; for communities, community leaders and representatives must collaborate with law enforcement and share responsibility for addressing the problems of crime and terrorism prevention in their neighborhoods. Appendixes