Commitment to Community
The Ephrata Police Department is introducing a new weapon in the fight against crime -- and that new weapon is you, the community. A new partnership between police and community is the foundation of Ephrata's own philosophy of community policing, known as COPS – Community Orientated Policing Strategy.
Purpose of COPS
Community policing has become a popular crime-fighting strategy across the country, but there is no one definition of community policing or one specific way of carrying it out. COPS is a unique philosophy that borrows from the experiences of other cities, but also breaks important new ground in meeting the needs of the Ephrata community.
What makes COPS innovative is that it brings the police, the community, and other agencies together to identify and solve neighborhood crime and quality of life issues, rather than simply react to their symptoms after the fact. Problem solving at the neighborhood level is supported by a variety of strategies, including neighborhood-based zone officers and COPS Coordinators; regular Zone Community Meetings involving police and residents; extensive training for both police and community; more efficient use of municipal services that impact crime and quality of life; and new strategies to help police and residents target crime hot spots.
With COPS, police officers continue to enforce the law and respond rapidly to serious crimes and life-threatening emergencies. But COPS recognizes that the police alone cannot solve crime or improve the quality of life in Ephrata. It takes a combined effort of police, community, and local government working together.
The Ephrata community (Borough and Township) is divided into four distinct police beats or zones. Zones are geographic areas to which police officers are assigned to handle police calls for service. Rather than changing zone officers daily, with COPS many of the same officers are assigned to a zone on a regular basis. This is to encourage partnerships and problem solving at the zone level. Click for Police Zones.