Rita Mullin

Neighborhood Based Policing-Neighborhood Watch

1. Briefly describe the structure of your program.

The message of diversity and tolerance cannot be left to develop on its own. Children from every continent representing a variety of cultures and religions are enrolled in Palatine’s local school system. To instill and foster acceptance of this diversity the department has implemented its Officer Friendly Program, teaching kindergartners through third graders, a lesson on respect. The lesson was first taught in 1995.

The children are taught that respecting others involves honoring them by showing consideration and treating others as they themselves would like to be treated. Respecting others can be shown through such behaviors as saying "thank you," listening politely and quietly to others, and raising one’s hand in class to speak. Treating others with kindness, including their closest friends, by not calling each other names, sharing with others, and to treat differences among them as something special are also enforced.

2. How is the community involved in the program, if at all? How has the community responded to the program?

School programs by design and necessity require the input and approval of school officials. The Officer Friendly program was developed in conjunction with the local school district. The Department has enjoyed an excellent working relationship with the schools for over twenty years.

For more information, please contact:

Commander Jim Haider
Palatine Police Department
200 E. Wood Street
Palatine, IL 60067
Telephone: (847) 359-9012

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The United States Conference of Mayors

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