The Portland Police department is taking part in a new customer satisfaction survey.
Portland is one of several police departments nationwide taking part in the effort to measure the quality of service officers provide to the public.
Historically, police performance has been measured by outcomes: by crime rates, arrest rates, the number of tickets written.
But this survey takes a different approach — it focuses instead on the quality of the encounters people have with police and on people’s perceptions of the police department.
Dennis Rosenbaum, professor of criminology at the University of Illinois, Chicago, is directing the survey. He says members of the public care a great deal about the way they’re treated by police.
He explained, “They want to be treated with respect, they want to have their voice listened to, they want to be treated in a way that’s fair, neutral and even-handed, and isn’t judging them based on their race or gender.”
The survey is being sent to people involved in traffic stops and accidents, as well as to crime victims. Rosenbaum says he’s looking for 500 responses from Portland.