Innovating a new response to community safety in municipalities that prioritizes people and decreases negative institutional interactions.
The Context: In every community, members come from all walks of life. Municipalities deliver services to maintain public safety, to educate the public on regulatory rules, conduct inspections, mediate between members of the public, and leverage voluntary compliance. For marginalized populations who may have regular interactions, specialized approaches from municipal teams must be engaged to invest in health and wellbeing.
Why This Project Matters: Municipalities are responsible to support community safety, yet historically marginalized populations (such as those facing housing insecurity, untreated mental health concerns, and substance misuse) have experienced approaches that can result in victimization and criminalization. We are developing the first pilot model with a large municipality where enforcement professionals are paired with social service direct support, using a people-first model that balances community safety with human dignity.
What We Are Doing: Contributing to the development of the program model, sensitive and equitable approaches including trauma informed practice, de-colonizing practice, and cultural safety, designing staff training.