Cjus 801, discussion form 5, reply 3 | CJUS 801 – Criminal Justice Program Evaluation | Liberty University

Reply must be at least 200-300 words. For each thread, you must support your assertions with at least 2 citations from sources such as your textbook, peer-reviewed journal articles, and the Bible. 

Textbook: Vito, G. F., & Higgins, G. E. (2015). Practical program evaluation for criminal justice. Waltham, MA: Elsevier. ISBN: 9781455777709.

**GABE**

Policing has become one of those loaded topics to discuss in the world. With the climate that the United States is in as far as policing and human rights go, it makes it difficult in some regard for one to voice their opinion on policing and the law enforcement agencies implementing anticrime/prevention programs in the community to help prevent and/or curb crime before it happens, or sometimes as it happens. However, to improve things within communities one must speak up on these things in order to create a safer space for future generations. Sometimes, to gain further understanding and guidance, we must look to biblical teachings to help with the process. Within this discussion we will discuss why biblical teachings would advocate for research so policing can definitively show they ‘do no harm’ when implementing an anticrime/prevention program.

Proverbs 28:5 states, “evil men do not understand justice, but those who seek the Lord understand it completely” (Proverbs 28:5, KJV). When thinking of policing and anticrime/prevention programs as it relates to biblical teachings, this verse embodies exactly why police anticrime/prevention program are a do no harm police programs.  When one becomes a police officer, they have many different hats that they wear. An important part of being an officer is helping the community and combating crime in any way that one can. This can be done with anticrime/prevention programs. Per Sherman et al. in the article, Preventing Crime: What Works, What Doesn’t, What’s Promising. Alternatives to Incarceration, County Programming (1998), “anticrime/prevention program is defined broadly as any practice shown to result in less crime than would occur without the practice. It also examined any program that claims to prevent crime or drug abuse, especially youth violence, and, in accordance with the congressional mandate, examined the effects of programs on risk and protective factors for youth violence and drug abuse” (p.16). These programs are the type of programs that help the community. They help make things better and all when they are done correctly, and they let the police officers interact in a positive way with the community.

A police officer ran anticrime/prevention program that had both negative and positive reviews is the D.A.R.E program. This program was extremely popular in the nineties and early two thousand. Per Pan and Bai in the article A Multivariate Approach to A Meta-Analytic Review of The Effectiveness of The D.A.R.E. Program (2009) states, “the D.A.R.E. program was designed to help elementary and junior high school students resist the peer-pressure of experimenting with drugs, tobacco, and alcohol. The D.A.R.E. program aims to reduce drug abuse among children by providing them with information that encourages them to make healthy decisions. Its effectiveness has been assessed by its two major outcomes: (a) the reduction of drug use, which includes tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, and other illicit drugs; and (b) the improvement of psychosocial behavior, which includes social skills (i.e., peer-pressure resistance), self-esteem, attitudes towards drug use, attitudes towards police, and family bonding. The program is normally taught by a police officer; and the core curriculum has 17 lessons, usually offered once a week for 45 to 60 minutes” (p.268). This program is what would be considered a do no harm program. Police officers went into schools to explain the dangers of drugs and attempt to prevent children from doing drugs. While there are mixed reviews on whether the program worked or not, it was a program that allowed the officers to help. And that is what officers are supposed to do.

             Psalm 106:3 states, “blessed are they who observe justice, who do righteousness at all times” (Psalm 106:3, KJV). When officers do positive things within the community, they are doing righteous things. They are helping the community and creating a better future for those to come. When working with anticrime/ prevention programs, they are helping those who are impressionable and people who are needing help. This is what policing is ultimately about. Creating a safe community and helping prevent crime from happening. 

References 

Pan, W., & Bai, H. (2009). A multivariate approach to a meta-analytic review of the effectiveness of the D.A.R.E. program. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 6(1), 267-277. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph6010267

Sherman, L. W., Gottfredson, D. C., MacKenzie, D. L., & Eck, J. (1998). Preventing crime: What works, what doesn’t, what’s promising. Alternatives to Incarceration, County Programming. Annual Report, 4(5), J15.

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