Durham Police Survey Shows Residents Trust and Respect Officers
Durham residents respect, trust and have confidence in Durham police officers, according to the 2017 Durham Police Satisfaction Survey. The survey results were presented to the Durham City Council today.
Ninety-one percent said they “have a great deal of respect” or “some respect” for Durham police officers and 78 percent of the respondents said they “strongly trust” or “somewhat trust” Durham police officers. Seventy-six percent of those surveyed are “very confident” or “somewhat confident” in Durham police officers. Seventy-one percent of the residents surveyed are satisfied with the professionalism of the police department; only 9 percent are dissatisfied. Sixty-six percent agree that the Durham Police Department is trying to maintain good relations with the community; only 9 percent disagree.
In terms of safety, 23 percent of those surveyed said Durham has become safer and 50 percent said it remained the same. Sixteen percent said it has become less safe and 11 percent said they don’t know.
“The survey contains valuable information from residents and paints a clear picture about what is most important to the people we serve,” said Police Chief C.J. Davis. “We are pleased that our agency is viewed in a positive light. The findings will help guide us as we move forward and plan future initiatives.”
Other findings indicated that residents support the use of surveillance cameras in public places and believe it is important for the makeup of the Durham Police Department to reflect the community in terms of race and ethnicity.
Fifty-eight percent of the respondents said they “strongly favor” the City of Durham having 24/7 video surveillance of public places (sidewalks, parks, downtown, etc.) and 23 percent “somewhat favor” the proposal. Thirteen percent oppose the video surveillance.
Seventy-four percent of residents think it is important for the makeup of the Durham Police Department to reflect the community in terms of race and ethnicity. Nineteen percent of residents indicated they think the Durham Police Department currently reflects the community and 27 percent indicated they do not think the Durham Police Department currently reflects the community. Fifty-four percent indicated they “don’t know.”
Residents indicated that the top community priorities for the police department in the next two years are efforts to prevent crime, visibility of officers in neighborhoods, efforts to cooperate with the public to address concerns, how quickly officers respond to emergencies and treating residents of different races and ethnicities equally.
Residents were asked about their overall satisfaction with a variety of police services. The areas with the highest level of satisfaction included the appearance and quality of police vehicles and equipment, professionalism of police officers, attitude and behavior of officers toward citizens, quality of dispatch (911) services and how quickly police respond to emergencies. The areas with the lowest levels of satisfaction were efforts to prevent crime, police safety education programs and parking enforcement services.
The ETC Institute, which conducted the survey in December 2017 and January 2018, received 505 completed surveys. The survey has a 95 percent level of confidence with a margin of error of +/- 4.3 percent.
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