Community Relations Section100 West First Street, Suite 250
Los Angeles, California 90012
The Community Relations Section (CRS) was established in 1965 in the aftermath of the Watts riots. Community Relations Division continuously strives toward maintaining open avenues of discourse between the numerous and diversified communities and the Department in an ongoing effort to keep abreast of, and sensitive to, the contemporary issues facing law enforcement today. Lt II Al Labrada is the Officer-in-Charge of Community Relations Division.
The creation of CRD was based upon recognition of the need for mutual understanding and constant interchange of communications between the Department and the public, especially within minority communities. Its initial goals were unification of the Department’s efforts to consolidate and broaden community support and to assist local station commanding officers in maintaining channels of communication with minorities throughout the City. It was felt that, by engaging minority communities in meaningful dialogue, police-community problems, which contributed to social unrest or major confrontations, could be avoided.
Building on that early operational philosophy, the present CRD maintains liaison with communities throughout one of the most culturally diverse cities in the world. Team members from CRD maintain contact with community-based organizations, leaders, spokespersons, and other sources to develop and keep open the lines of communication between the Chief of Police and those groups or individuals. It is still incumbent upon CRD to maintain a constant interchange of communication with the public in order to monitor emerging trends or tensions and take positive action to avert situations that could be damaging to the city, community or the Department. The impetus for CRD to do so is to maintain a tranquil environment citywide and to foster mutual trust and respect between the Department and the community. In this manner, CRD is able to gain some level of understanding as to the Department’s effectiveness in carrying out its mission and measuring the "pulse" of the city.
- Training regarding community relations issues is conducted for recruit officers at the Police Academy by CRD team members.
- CRD coordinates quarterly meetings between the Chief of Police and various community forums such as Asian, Hispanic, African-American, Gay and Lesbian, and youth and clergy groups citywide.
- Community surveys are conducted periodically by CRD personnel in selected areas to determine levels of satisfaction with Department services.
- CRD members attend various meetings throughout the city as representatives of the Chief of Police.
- When the Chief of Police is unable to do so, CRD personnel may make presentations or give awards on his behalf.
- Liaison with community activists and leaders covering the entire political spectrum is maintained by CRD.
- CRD is the official Department liaison with the gay and lesbian community.
- CRD acts in an advisory capacity to the Department’s Governmental Liaison Officer in the discharge of his duties to interact on behalf of the Chief of Police with all levels of government, including city, state and federal plus foreign consulates.
- At lawful demonstrations, CRD team members advise demonstration leaders and police personnel on first amendment rights and guarantees in addition to limits on police powers at such incidents.
- CRD personnel respond to the scene of high-profile incidents, such as law enforcement-related deaths or injuries or major confrontations between the police and the public to take a proactive role in quelling rumors and misinformation. The dissemination of factual information at such incidents is a primary task for CRD personnel.
- The mission of the Community Relations Division, Office of the Chief of Police, is to develop, recommend, and strengthen policy and programs that enhance police/community relations, increase understanding and cooperation and reduce the fear of crime.
The Administrative Unit is responsible for the administrative duties within Community Relations Section.