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Rutgers receives grant for statewide police reform initiative

The Community Engagement Police Reform Program is designed to connect law enforcement agencies with experts to help them review and revise existing policies, training and tactics in order to better serve their communities. – Photo by Facebook

The Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG) Foundation awarded a $300,000 grant to the Rutgers Center on Policing (COP) to create a Community Engagement Police Reform Program, according to a press release.

The new program is designed to connect law enforcement agencies with experts to help them review and revise existing policies, training and tactics in order to better serve their communities, according to the release.

“This is a crucial time in our country for police reform and community engagement," said Linda Tartaglia, director of the COP, according to the release. "I would like to thank the PSEG Foundation for its generous sponsorship and belief in the importance of working toward better policing and safer communities."

The Community Engagement Police Reform Program will feature educational initiatives that are applicable to all law enforcement agencies in New Jersey as well as community-specific programs, according to the release. These initiatives include assessments to identify specific needs within individual communities and workshops for individual police departments to improve their strategies.

The COP will use its previous work with the Newark Police Department’s consent decree, a directive from the Justice Department calling for police reform, to help shape the Community Engagement Police Reform Program, according to the release.

“Collaborative partnerships between law enforcement agencies and the communities they serve are important to developing solutions, increasing public trust and overall making our communities better places to live and work,” said Rick Thigpen, senior vice president for Corporate Citizenship at PSEG and chairman of the PSEG Foundation, according to the release. “Funding from the PSEG Foundation will help to address critical social justice issues that our state and the nation is facing.”


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