“To Protect and to Serve” is the philosophy of the West Goshen Police Department and they are working hard to let residents know that it is more than a catch phrase.
“A lot of the time, people tell me that they don’t want to bother us, but I always tell them the same thing: Please do! That’s what we are here for!” says Police Chief Joseph Gleason. “Getting involved is what police departments do.”
By the numbers, getting involved looks like ~25,000 calls each year and 4 distinct divisions: Patrol, Traffic, Criminal Investigations, and Juvenile & Community Relations. The department has 31 sworn officers, 2 full-time clerical staff members and 2 full-time dispatchers.
The police department wants residents and businesses in the township to understand what the police do—and can do—for the community. To this end, the department hosts a Citizens Police Academy that is open to residents and business owners in the township who are interested in learning more about what the department does. The recent “graduating class” was made up of a variety of residents including college students exploring law enforcement as a career, church group members seeking a deeper partnership with the department and residents who wanted to be more deeply involved in the community.
Officers are also available to come speak to different groups. “We want residents to understand our accessibility to them,” say Chief Gleason. “Any unit is able and willing to come out to do a presentation. We believe that sharing information is an important part of our job.”
The department is considering holding multiple Citizens Police Academy sessions throughout the year if there is interest. To express your interest or request the police department to come present to your group, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.