UB First University Law Enforcement Agency to Participate In Progressive, Problem-Oriented Policing Program

By Mary Beth Spina

Release Date: February 9, 1994 This content is archived.


BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The University at Buffalo Department of Public Safety is the first university law enforcement agency in the nation to participate in a policing program devoted to problem-solving that has been developed by the Police Executive Research Forum.

The forum is a national organization of progressive police executives dedicated to improving policing.

Until now, the forum's "Problem-Oriented Policing" program had been presented only to municipal police departments, including those in St. Louis; Santa Monica, Calif.; Baltimore, and Kansas City, said Lee Griffin, UB director of public safety.

The eight-hour seminar, held at UB last month for all officers and supervisors in the Department of Public Safety, is designed to move police agencies away from incident-driven policing and toward more proactive problem-solving. Participants learn to identify the underlying causes of criminal and civil problems. As the most visible arm of government, police are encouraged to function as a liaison between the community and agencies that can help address the problems of those they serve.

"On a more informal level," said Griffin, "we have been using many of the techniques at UB for a number of years."

But the formal teaching approach of the seminar provided the structure to organize and expand the UB officers' and supervisors' awareness of the problem-solving process, he added.

The seminar at UB was co-sponsored by Local 1792 of Council 82 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME); Joint New York State Labor Management and the UB Department of Public Safety.