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Pitzer College

Publication Date

Fall 2012

Program Name

Brazil: Social Justice and Sustainable Development

Abstract

On April 27, 2011 the first community base of Salavador was installed in the neighborhood of Calabar representing a new model of policing focusing more on prevention rather than repression. Before the arrival of the base, Calabar was a community where many feared to enter. Constant shootings between rival gangs and sporadic police invasions made it a dangerous places to live in. Since the implantation of the base a new era for the community has begun and people can now walk up and down the streets of their neighborhood freely without fear of being struck by stray bullets. Additionally, the base has brought to the community social programs, but most residents in the community agree that these programs are not enough and that trafficking continuous to have a strong footing in the neighborhood. Due to the heavy trafficking, police officers conduct stops and searches of many residents in the community and this has proven to be a very contentious issue. The three weeks I spent researching in Calabar showed me the complexities of the relationship between the police and residents and most importantly, that all relationships and individuals are different. Some residents welcome the police with open arms while others have deep mistrust because of the experience they've had with police brutality. Some police officers see their work as a social response to the public's need while others who are more fit for gunfights see community policing as merely decorative work. Different institutional and historical factors come into play in the relationship between the police and residents, but one thing is certain, had there been no base there would be no relationship to analyze except for one of violence and mistrust. Thus the base represents a new beginning and this paper will show the ways in which old paradigms are broken, some are maintained and new ones are created.

Disciplines

Civic and Community Engagement | Demography, Population, and Ecology | Family, Life Course, and Society | Inequality and Stratification | Other Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration | Politics and Social Change | Social Control, Law, Crime, and Deviance | Social Psychology and Interaction

 

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