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2013 COPS Hiring Program (CHP)

Community  Policing  Self-Assessment  Tool  (CP-SAT)

The Community Policing Self-Assessment Tool (CP-SAT) is an online survey that helps your agency measure its progress in implementing community policing. CP-SAT confidentially captures information about community partnerships, problem solving, and organizational change. Upon completion, agencies will receive an easy-to-use Summary Report that summarizes their data so agency management can identify the community policing strengths and areas for improvement. It is mandatory that all 2013 COPS Hiring Program (CHP) grantees administer the CP-SAT in their agency at the beginning of the grant period and at the end of the grant period. All 2013 CHP grantees will be contacted by ICF International, our project partner for administering the CP-SAT, with their assigned administration date. CHP grantees will be notified again towards the end of the grant period for their second assigned CP-SAT administration date.

Introduction: It is mandatory that all 2013 COPS Hiring Program (CHP) grantees administer the CP-SAT in their agency at the beginning and at the end of their grant period. This survey is intended to be a useful management tool for your agency and will not negatively impact your grant or future funding opportunities with the COPS Office. This survey captures overall community policing efforts and does not assess an agency's community policing implementation under a specific grant. It is also different from the progress reports required for your COPS hiring grant(s).

If you are a 2009 COPS Hiring Recovery Program (CHRP) grantee looking for information on the CP-SAT, please refer to the CHRP CP-SAT page. If you are both a 2009 CHRP grantee and a 2013 CHP grantee, please refer to FAQ #18.

Purpose of CP-SAT: This assessment allows agencies to measure the extent to which community policing has been implemented within their agency.

Background of CP-SAT: This tool was developed with significant input from community policing experts and practitioners and was designed to meet scientific standards for rigor, while also being user-friendly. This tool was created based on over five years of work by the COPS Office, ICF International, and the Police Executive Research Forum and has been administered in agencies across the country. The tool is currently being administered by ICF International on behalf of the COPS Office.

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CP-SAT Modules

The CP-SAT will measure the three key components of community policing:


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Description of CP-SAT

* Community Partners include individuals/organizations who have formally agreed to work together in the pursuit of common goals. Community partnerships involve a two-way relationship that involves collaboration, shared power, and shared decision-making with the law enforcement agency.


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Benefits

*Agencies with fewer than five sworn staff members will receive a copy of their survey responses, even though they will only submit one survey on behalf of the agency.


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Process for Participation: Overall Steps

Step 1: Agency receives email from ICF International with assigned CP-SAT administration period (specific dates to be determined - see CP-SAT FAQs, #4).

Step 2: Agency selects a key contact to be responsible for administering the CP-SAT to agency staff and community partners.

Step 3: Agency emails or calls ICF (CPSAT@icfsurveys.com or 877.99.CPSAT) to confirm they have received their assigned administration date and to start the CP-SAT process.

Step 4: Once agency contacts ICF to agree to administration date, agency receives email from ICF International with details about CP-SAT administration (including example invitation and reminder email language, survey URL, and agency passcode).

Step 5: Agency key contact:

Step 6: Agency key contact emails survey invitation and two survey reminders to staff and community partners on specified dates.

Step 7: ICF tracks response rate and emails agencies with low response after two weeks of administration.

Step 8: After the three-week administration period ends, ICF generates an agency-specific Summary Report, which is provided to the agency chief executive and key contact.

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Contact Information

Email or call ICF at CPSAT@icfsurveys.com or 877.99.CPSAT (877.992.7728) with any questions.

CP-SAT FAQs

  1. What is the CP-SAT?
    The Community Policing Self-Assessment Tool (CP-SAT) was developed by the COPS Office, ICF International, and the Police Executive Research Forum. This tool was created to provide agencies with the ability to measure the extent to which they have implemented community policing initiatives and provide them direction with areas that they can develop.

  2. Who is eligible to use the CP-SAT?
    The CP-SAT is a mandatory requirement for 2013 CHP grantees. If you are a 2009 CHRP grantee, please visit the CHRP website for more specific information. If you are a 2010 CHP grantee or a non-grantee agency that is looking to implement the CP-SAT, we are currently exploring options and you may contact the COPS Response Center at askCopsRC@usdoj.gov for a status update.

  3. Why is the CP-SAT required?
    You can reference the 2013 CHP Grant Owners Manual, grant condition #16 it states:
    • Community Policing Self-Assessment Tool (CP-SAT)
      The COPS Office will require your agency to complete the Community Policing Self Assessment Tool (CP-SAT) twice within the grant period, once at the beginning and again towards the end of your grant period.
    • Why This Condition:
      The Community Policing Self Assessment Tool (CP-SAT) is intended to create an objective measure of your current community policing practices. You will receive a report summarizing your agency's community policing activities, which will help you to design your strategic plan, training, and performance reporting initiatives based on your agency's community policing strengths and areas in need of additional attention. All of this is provided free of charge as a resource to manage your policing goals; it measures community policing activities and successes, but it does not capture outcome or impact indicators. Administering the CP-SAT twice during your grant period will allow your agency to compare the progress of your community policing practices and provide a tool for your administration to reflect back on your agency's accomplishments. The CP-SAT resource can be used as a long-term tool for your agency's planning and training, even after your grant period expires.
    • What You Should Do:
      This grant condition is to make your agency aware of the CP-SAT administration requirement associated with CHP grants. The CP-SAT essentially consists of a short community policing survey which will be administered to your agency staff. The COPS Office, through a third-party provider, will conduct this survey and support the entire process, minimizing any burden on your agency personnel. Within three months after you return your signed grant award document, you will be contacted to begin the CP-SAT process.

  4. How many times will I be required to take the CP-SAT?
    All 2013 CHP grantees are required to administer the CP-SAT in their agencies twice-within the first year and last year of their grants (see Grant Owner's Manual, Grant Condition #16)

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  5. When will my agency take the CP-SAT?
    All 2013 CHP grantees will be contacted by ICF International within the first 6 months of their grant with their assigned administration date for the first administration of the CP-SAT and again in 2016 for the second administration. Administration dates for 2016 have not yet determined, but each agency will be contacted closer to the end of their grant with CP-SAT administration details.

  6. Who completes the CP-SAT?
    The survey is completed by all sworn staff, civilian staff who work on community partnerships and/or problem solving, and representatives from community partner organizations who are knowledgeable about the agency and how it interacts with partners and the community. Sampling guidance is available for agencies with more than 1,200 sworn staff members that elect not to distribute the CP-SAT to all staff. Only the civilian staff who work on problem-solving efforts should take the CP-SAT. The CP-SAT can also be administered to community partner organizations (see FAQ #7). For agencies with fewer than five (5) sworn staff members, we ask that staff members complete the survey together, as a group.

  7. Which community partners should be included?
    Community partnerships involve collaboration, shared power, and shared decision-making with the law enforcement agency. While partners and relationships in the community can take many forms, for this assessment, it is best to include individuals/organizations who have formally agreed to work together in the pursuit of common goals. The community partner portion of the assessment asks questions such as:
    • How much does the law enforcement agency collaborate in developing shared goals for problem-solving efforts with your organization?
    • To what degree does the law enforcement agency provide sufficient resources (e.g., financial, staff time, personnel, equipment, political, and/or managerial support) to support the work of your partnership?
    • To what extent does the law enforcement agency develop relationships with community members (e.g., residents, organizations, and groups)?

  8. As a participant completing the survey, which staff type should I select in the first question of the CP-SAT?
    • Line officer - you hold a non-supervisory position in the agency.
    • First line supervisor/Middle management - you hold a supervisory position in the agency.
    • Command staff - you hold one of the top positions in your agency (e.g., chief).
    • Civilian staff - you are a non-sworn staff member of the police agency.
    • Community partner - you do not work for the police agency, but have formally agreed to work in a partnership with the agency in the pursuit of common goals.

    If you do not work for the police agency, please select "Community partner." A community partner is an individual who has, or works for an organization that has, formally agreed to work in a partnership with a law enforcement agency in the pursuit of common goals. Community partnerships involve a two-way relationship that involves collaboration, shared power, and shared decision-making with the law enforcement agency (e.g., media, business owner, city employee in Public Works department).

    If you are a volunteer for the police agency who provides support services to the agency without monetary benefit, please select "Civilian". Services a volunteer performs typically include community outreach, telephone work, research, and other administrative tasks.

    If you are a detective or a member of a special operations unit (e.g., gang unit, SWAT, school resource officer), please select the level of sworn staff that best fits with your level in the agency. For example, please select "First-line supervisor/Middle management" if you are a supervisor, but select "Line officer" if you have a non-supervisory position in your unit.

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  9. Is the CP-SAT offered in any languages other than English?
    In addition to English, the COPS Office currently offers a Spanish language version of the CP-SAT. If your agency would prefer the Spanish version of the survey, please notify ICF and they will provide your agency with Spanish distribution and reminder email language and the URL for the Spanish survey.


  10. How long does the survey take to complete?
    The survey takes approximately 15 minutes to complete per respondent.

  11. Who administers the survey?
    Each agency selects a key contact who will administer the CP-SAT to participants, including sending the initial survey invitation and at least two reminder emails. The key contact will not have access to a participant's survey responses. ICF International will provide instructions and all survey materials to the agency prior to their assigned administration date. ICF will also track survey response rate and prepare and send the Summary Report to each agency.

  12. What type of report will my agency receive upon completing the CP-SAT?
    Each participating agency* will receive a Summary Report, which summarizes their results in a user-friendly format and provides benchmark data from other agencies to serve as a comparison and better help with interpretation of your agency’s strengths and weaknesses. Although the report does not interpret the data collected, it allows the agency to assess the extent to which community policing has been implemented across various aspects of community policing and among units and ranks. Through the identification of community policing strengths and areas for improvement, your agency will be able to enhance its community policing efforts. Click here for an excerpt from an example report. In addition to the exhibits included in the example report, each agency will be provided descriptive statistics (e.g., number of responses, mean, standard deviation) for each item on the CP-SAT Short Form to further aid in report interpretation and strategic decision-making.

    After each agency participates in the CP-SAT process a second time in the last year of their grant period (see FAQ #5), agencies will receive a report that displays their scores for both administrations (i.e., pre/post) to document changes in community policing activities over time.

    * Agencies with fewer than five sworn staff members will receive a copy of their survey responses, even though they will only submit one survey on behalf of the agency


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  13. Are all responses kept confidential?
    Responses to this survey will be kept confidential to the extent provided by law. There are no individual identifiers in the data that the agency will receive, and the agency will not be able to link an individual's data to the participant. Note that since agencies with fewer than five sworn staff will be completing and submitting only one survey, that group’s responses will be identified. Agencies of this size must complete the survey as a group, and the responses will reflect the group's perspectives, rather than that of any individual(s).

  14. As a participant completing the survey, will my administrator or agency leadership have access to my responses?
    No. Responses to this survey will be kept confidential to the extent provided by law. There are no individual identifiers in the data that the agency will receive, and the agency will not be able to link an individual's data to the participant. The survey administrator and police chief or sheriff will have access to the agency final report that will provide a summary of all participants' data from your agency. For agencies with fewer than five (5) sworn staff members, see FAQ #12.

  15. Who sees my agency's results?
    The final report will be provided to the chief executive of the law enforcement agency. The executive will determine how the report is distributed in his or her agency. To maximize the benefit of the CP-SAT, we encourage you to share the results with your organization and community partners in order to congratulate them on the successes and identify strategies to enhance your delivery of community policing.

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  16. How can the COPS Office support my agency in areas of community policing that need improvement?
    Your agency may contact the COPS Office Response Center at 800.421.6770 or email at askCOPSRC@usdoj.gov if the assessment results show the agency is low in an area of community policing. The COPS Office is well-equipped to provide your agency with various resources (e.g., knowledge products, toolkits, and/or training opportunities). Additionally, you can visit this website www.cops.usdoj.gov/Default.asp?Item=2589 for a set of helpful community policing resources.

  17. What if I am a 2009 CHRP grantee looking for information on the CP-SAT?
    As a part of the 2009 COPS Hiring Recovery Program (CHRP) grant, you will have the option of participating in the CP-SAT in spring of 2014.Please refer to the CHRP CP-SAT page for more information.

  18. What if I am both a 2009 CHRP Grant recipient and a 2013 CHP Grant recipient?
    As a grant recipient in both years, it is elective to participate in the CP-SAT as a 2009 CHRP Grant recipient; however, it is a grant requirement through the 2013 CHP award. Therefore, you must participate in the CP-SAT. As a 2013 CHP grantee, you are required to take a pre-post assessment.
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  20. As a Sheriff's Department, our agency's sworn staff includes many deputies who are not involved in community policing. Should these employees be invited to participate in the CP-SAT?
    The COPS Office generally recommends that all sworn staff should participate in the online survey assessment. While some law enforcement functions may appear to have an unclear relationship to community policing, in fact these principles can be applied in some form to nearly every policing function. However, we have identified specific non-law enforcement functions performed by many sheriff's departments-namely court security, prisoner transport, and jail operations-that are not relevant to the activities captured through the CP-SAT. For that reason, we recommend that you do not invite sworn staff involved in those functions to participate during your agency's administration period. All other sworn staff should be invited to participate in the administration of the CP-SAT.

  21. If our jurisdiction contracts for police services with another law enforcement agency, who should be invited to participate in the CP-SAT?
    In order to avoid participant duplication, officers should participate in the CP-SAT on behalf of the agency they are assigned and represent at the time of CP-SAT administration. That is:
    • Deputies or officers who are assigned to your agency as a result of a contract with another law enforcement agency (both funded by the COPS Office as well as through your own local funds) should be included in your sworn roster and invited to complete the CP-SAT on behalf of your agency.

  22. If our agency provides police services for other jurisdictions through a contractual relationship, who should be invited to participate in the CP-SAT?
    Because all deputies or officers are trained and managed by the contractor agency, it is important to include both those who are assigned specifically to a jurisdiction contracting for police services, as well as those who work generally for the contractor agency, in developing an understanding of community policing practice. Therefore, all agency personnel should be included in the CP-SAT administration process.

    However, if both a contractor and contracting agency are CHP grantees in the same funding year, deputies or officers who are contracted from your agency to serve a different municipality should be removed from your sworn roster and should not complete the CP-SAT on behalf of your agency.

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