Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $1,200,000)
The Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) is the second largest municipal police agency in Los Angeles County and provides law enforcement services to the 7th largest city in the State of California. Long Beach covers over 50 square miles including major entertainment areas, waterfront attractions, an airport, and is home to the second busiest port in the United States. Long Beach is considered one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the nation; its population of 470,000 residents is comprised of Latinos (40.8%), Caucasians (29.4%), African Americans (13.5%), and Asians (12.9%). Nearly 27% of Long Beach residents are immigrants. Further, the local percentage of households living in poverty is 16% of the total population.
The Active Bystandership for Law Enforcement (ABLE) Project recognizes that first responders must do a better job of intervening when necessary to prevent their colleagues from causing harm or performing costly mistakes. The training works to directly reduce biased policing and misconduct, which disproportionately impacts people in the Black, Latinx, and poor demographics, by teaching practical strategies and tactics that are effective at preventing unnecessary harm to these community groups. Benefits realized from this training include:
• Reduced unnecessary harm to civilians
• Reduced unnecessary harm to officers
• Reduced risk of officers losing their jobs
• Reduced risk of lawsuits against the department, city, and individual officers
• Improved police/community relations
• Improved officer health and wellness
• Improved officer job satisfaction
• Improved citizen satisfaction with their law enforcement agency
This renowned project is run out of Georgetown University and the training they provide is free. To participate in the program, Georgetown University requires law enforcement agencies to dedicate an employee to serve as a Program Coordinator and oversee the program. LBPD proposes to dedicate a Police Sergeant to coordinate the training of all sworn personnel and Special Services Officers, who provide security on PD contracts and in the jail. The principal cost of the program is the staff time for the 10-hour training block and to backfill one Police Sergeant.
Participation in the ABLE Project will be transformative for the department by creating a culture that supports peer intervention to prevent harm to officers and the community.