A few months ago, the Madison Police Department was contacted by the Vera Institute of Justice out of New York City inviting us to participate in their 2013 "Police Station Visitors Week" program (http://www.vera.org/project/police-station-visitors-week). The Vera Institute, in conjunction with Altus Global Alliance (http://www.altus.org/#), organize a week long effort where local police departments, in 20 different countries across the world, invite in residents, groups and organizations to learn more about their police department and recieve a tour of their facilities.
This week (November 3rd - 9th), the MPD's South and East Police Districts are participating in this world wide event. So far, groups such as the Madison Goodman Library, Urban League and Centro Hispano have recieved or will be recieving a brief overview of how the City of Madison provides community oriented police services through our decentrailized, district station based model. Each group is learning how the City of Madison embarked on "district policing" starting back 25 years ago(January 1988) when the first "Experimental Police District" opened in the 800 block of W Badger Road. In the years which followed, district stations were built in the North District (1996), West District (2000), new South District (2002) and the East District (2006). Our efforts were based on a simple principal at that time, to get closer to the people we serve.
If you have a group who would like to participate yet this week in the Vera Institute's "Police Visitor Station Week" program, please contact me here at the South Police District by phone (608-267-8687) or e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we can try to arrange for your participation. Please check out the above websites for additional information on the PSVW program taking place this week in many different departments across the United States and other countries.