The goal of this project is to support the MoIA in implementing their Community Policing Programme “Building a Partner relation citizen-police” that they have developed in line with the new police reform. It also aims to enhance the mid-level management supervisory staff’s knowledge on conflict prevention and conflict resolution through specific presentations on the subject matter and through increased knowledge of the tool, Inspector of Prevention (IoP) position.
Among the steps towards building a partnership between the police and citizens has been the creation of the Inspector of Prevention Officer. This tool is being used in this multi ethnic society to build communication between the police and citizens to reduce conflicts. The 2008 Community Policing Survey results show that on questions regarding the police’s interaction with the local citizens there is a large gap of distrust which can lead to outbursts of conflict. On three key questions from the 2008 Survey; the police treat ethnic groups equally, the primary responsibility of the police is to protect the State and lastly the police treat all citizens with respect. The results are disappointingly showing a need to redouble efforts on partnership building and conflict prevention.
The OSCE Mission to Skopje's Police Development Department supports the Government in implementing its National Police Reform Strategy, which aims to bring policing in the country closer to international standards. Police reform reached a milestone in October 2006 with the adoption of the Law on Police, which has allowed the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MoIA) to undertake important steps in the reform process. With the following project, OSCE also intends to support the MoIA community policing.
At the mid supervisory level of MoIA the new position of Inspector of Prevention and the possible uses of these officers for conflict prevention in the local community are still at the initial stages of learning. Antidotal encounters with the mid level supervisory staff and feedback from the Inspectors of Prevention shows there is a need for mid level training on conflict prevention through this new position. In discussing the need for training of the mid level structure of the MoI. Those supervisors in command of the new IoP positions have endorsed the need for training to be done. To insure community policing is sustained and the position of Inspector of Prevention (IoP) is used effectively in the field. Training on conflict resolution and how to effectively use IoPs is required.
Community Policing has as its objective to building partnerships between the police and citizens to reduce the incidences of conflict. This is especially important in minority areas of the country. In discussions with mid level management and the MoI there is a gap in the knowledge of how the newly created position of IoP can assist them in prevention /resolution of conflict.
In Krani, 79 officers completed the IoP training in December 2008 (Project: “Inspectors of Prevention Training”, Ref. Num. 2600521) and have acquired skills in conflict prevention and resolution as well as working in a multi ethnic society. These acquired skills are found lacking in the mid level supervisory structure. In order to successfully be able to implement the tools learnt by the IoPs at the aforementioned training course, it is important to invest efforts in bringing their direct supervisory staff up to speed on these new skills on how to properly use them (IoPs) in the area of conflict prevention.