To be successful, a law enforcement agency must define and articulate its belief’s that can be used to guide the department. Values serve that purpose. Values serve to guide the daily organizational operations as well as individual officers.
I recognize that it is human nature for law enforcement officers to respond to situations using their own set of personal values in the absence of departmental guidelines. For that reason, it is important that I as the leader of the organization develop a set of values that serve as the overarching framework for all members of the department. Otherwise, there is the possibility that each individual officer will carry out their duties using their own value system, with great potential of creating problems for the department.
Once I establish the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department’s value system it will set forth a clear message of belief’s and broad goals that will change as society changes. For that reason, values can serve as the parameter for flexibility in the organization, operations, and procedures. The value system, thereby, becomes the basis for developing plans for changing strategies of delivering law enforcement services.
A set of values serve a number of purposes for delivering police services:
- Sets forth the department’s philosophy of delivering law enforcement services
- States in clear terms what the department believes in
- Articulates in broad terms the overall goals of the department
- Reflects the community’s expectations of the department
- Serves as a basis for developing policies and procedures
- Serves as the parameter for organizational flexibility
- Provides a basis for operational strategies
- Provides a framework for officers performance
- Serves as a framework from which the department can be evaluated.
As your elected sheriff of San Bernardino County, the following set of values will guide the operations of the department. These values will set forth the philosophy of law enforcement policing in San Bernardino County and a commitment to deliver quality services to the community. I believe that these values will also reflect the citizen’s expectations, which will ultimately be manifested in the departments’ administrative policies and procedures. This will be accomplished by ensuring that for each new procedure or rule issued by the department, a policy statement will be issued setting forth the values inherent in the development of the procedure of the policy.