The School Liaison Officer program is a cooperative effort of the Southfield Police Department and the Southfield Public Schools.
Under this arrangement, a Southfield Police Officer is assigned to each of the high schools. The program exemplifies the Southfield Police Department's commitment to the community policing concept.
The Liaison Officer interacts on a daily basis with faculty, staff and students in the casual, non-threatening school environment. The officer not only enforces laws, but also becomes counselor, confidant and friend. Once the relationship with students and staff is established, the officer takes a proactive approach toward preventing juvenile delinquency. The officer identifies students at risk of a negative encounter with the criminal justice system, and attempts to influence them positively. Parents may be contacted if the student's negative behavior escalates.
Incidents occur in which the officer is allowed discretion in terms of enforcement. When appropriate, the officer refers the students involved to community or social organizations, effectively keeping the student out of the criminal justice system. The officer adopts a proactive - rather then reactive - approach toward preventing inappropriate behavior. The officer makes numerous educational classroom presentations on laws that particularly affect juveniles. The topics include drunk driving, drugs and alcohol, teen curfews, conflict resolution, search and seizure, retail fraud, street gangs and vehicular traffic laws. Several times a year, the officer participates in open forums with the students in which general law enforcement topics are discussed.
The officer's expertise is also useful in identifying, and expediting a solution for safety and security hazards on campus.
The Southfield Police Department's School Liaison Program is the epitome of a successful community policing program. One of the most positive aspects of this program is the establishment of a productive relationship with the students who, one day, will be the leaders of our community.
For more information, call (248) 796-5400.