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Police Department

Community Oriented Policing Services

C.O.P.S

DARE Program | Tips for Parent | GREAT Program | STEP Program | School Resource Officer
Please feel free to contact our Office at (908)769-2971 for any information you may require regarding our programs or to schedule a tour of Police Headquarters.

The Community Policing Office is a unit within the North Plainfield Police Department’s Criminal Investigation Division. It comes under the direction of the Lieutenant assigned to the Criminal Investigation Division.

The following units and services are provided through the Cop Shoppe: The Crime Prevention Unit, D.A.R.E. and G.R.E.A.T. programs, the School Resource Officer, the S.T.E.P. Program, and the bicycle patrol program.

The Crime Prevention Unit seeks to reduce crime through interaction with the community by means of educational seminars and presentations. The crime prevention unit is responsible for the Neighborhood Watch Program. Currently there are twelve organized Neighborhood Watch Programs throughout the Borough. Neighborhood Watches bring neighbors together to watch out for each other and notify the police of any suspicious activity. Please contact the Crime Prevention Detective if you are interested in starting or joining one. The Unit also prints and disseminates crime prevention brochures to crime victims on a daily basis in response to the police reports generated. The Unit also fingerprints children at various fairs and fun days held during the year throughout the Borough.

The duties of the Crime Prevention Office are handled by Detective Kuga.


DARE PROGRAM
The North Plainfield Police Department’s D.A.R.E. Unit consists of two full time Police Officers, Detective Eric Fowler and Detective Alex Kuga. These officers are nationally certified in both DARE, (drug abuse resistance training) and Great, (Gang Resistance, Education and Training). These Officers are seen on the Borough’s streets during the summer month conducting bicycle patrol of the Borough. During the school year they are in the Borough’s schools teaching both the DARE and GREAT programs as well as workshops on conflict resolution, responsible citizenship, and bicycle safety rodeos.

D.A.R.E. - Drug Abuse Resistance and Education is a program developed approximately 14 years ago in Los Angeles, California. The program was developed by educators, police officers, and doctors to help equip children with the skills necessary to resist peer pressure to experiment with illegal drugs. In 1995 it was revised to include skills to resolve problems without using violence. It has been revised and updated again in 2003 to improve its effectiveness.

The officers teach the program to children in the fifth grade during the school year. The student’s exposure to the Officers often leads to long lasting relationships that builds a positive rapport between the police and the community. The officers also spend time with the students at lunch and on the playground.

The D.A.R.E. Officers work closely with the student’s teachers. The teachers are in the classroom during the lessons to provide supervision for the students.

The program focuses on four areas:

    • Provides accurate information about the dangers of alcohol, tobacco and drugs
    • Teaches the students decision making skills
    • Shows the students how to resist peer pressure and violence
    • Provides the students with positive alternatives to drug use and violence

TIPS FOR PARENTS
  • Establish family rules that make the use of drugs non-negotiable.
  • Know your children’s friends and communicate with their parents.
  • Know where your children are going and with who.
  • If your child is going to a party, check to see if their will be parental supervision.
  • Communicate with your child, and they will communicate with you (leave the door open).
The North Plainfield DARE program is currently taught to all 5th graders in the North Plainfield Public School district.

GREAT PROGRAM
The G.R.E.A.T. Program is divided into two segments, one is taught in the third grade and the other in the seventh grade.
The G.R.E.A.T. Program is designed to help children set self directed goals; resist negative peer pressures; learn conflict resolution skills; and understand how gangs and youth violence negatively impact the quality of their lives. The students discover for themselves the ramifications of gang and youth violence through structured exercises and interactive approaches to learning. Through the combined efforts of law enforcement, the schools, and the community, we can make a difference in the lives of children across America by providing them with the necessary skills and information to say "NO" to gangs and acts of random violence.

Gang Resistance Education and Training (G.R.E.A.T.) began in 1992 through a partnership between the Phoenix Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF). Together with other Arizona police departments, they developed a middle school curriculum, with the goal of reducing gang involvement and youth violence.

Other programs that come out of the Community Policing Unit include bicycle safety programs taught by the Bicycle Officers, tours of borough hall and police/safety related presentations to any group that requests it.

 


STEP PROGRAM
The Summer Teen Evening Program (STEP) is the outcome of the combined efforts of the Community Policing Unit, Guidance personnel from the Board of Education, and the support of the Municipal Alliance. The program runs during the Summer and provides the Borough’s youth with an alternative to hanging out on the street. Pickup basketball games, soccer, and movies are the main activities, with an end of summer picnic. The program often has as many as 70 teens in attendance.

An introduction to your SCHOOL RESOURCE OFFICER (SRO)
Detective Eric Fowler is the School Resource Officer and has an office in the High School.

Since September of 1999 a Police Officer has been assigned to the North Plainfield School district as a School Resource Officer and has assisted with the Borough wide school identification cards and conducted security surveys at the Borough’s schools. The majority of his time is dedicated to the High School and Middle School, where his presence has facilitated the flow of information between the Board of Education and the Police Department.

The School Resource Officer (SRO) is a certified Law Enforcement Officer who is permanently assigned to provide coverage to a school or set of schools. The SRO is a nationally recognized program involving the placement of sworn law enforcement officers in an educational environment. This represents a proactive strategy designed to bring prevention and intervention into the schools. Its emergence is due to many municipalities adopting a community oriented policing philosophy along with concerns about safety, security and order in the schools.

School Resource Officers are not licensed counselors and do not attempt to carry out the functions of a licensed counselor. The SRO’s mission is to provide information and act as a link to support services both inside and outside the school environment. A SRO is not a “Security Guard,” “Hall Monitor,” Disciplinarian,” or replacement for any school employee. The SRO is a sworn police officer whose mission is to keep the peace so students can learn and teachers can teach.

Goals and benefits of the SRO program include: emergency planning for the entire school district; providing the schools with an additional educational resource by sharing their expertise in the classroom; promoting an orderly school environment; and providing an immediate emergency response to what is often a community’s densest daytime population cluster.

 

NPPD Accreditation