To counter drivers of irregular migration, create safer communities and strengthen security, IOM strengthens Community Policing (CP) structures in Iraq. The CP model is central to rebuilding trust between the community and law enforcement and paving the way for cooperation aimed at preventing and solving crimes.
The CP approach aims to restore accountability and legitimacy of the police as a security provider able to communicate with a wide range of stakeholders. This is particularly relevant in Iraq’s current context of displacement and return.
Establishment of Community Policing Forums (CPFs)
In coordination with the Iraq Ministry of Interior and local authorities, IOM trains and supports community members and law enforcement to establish CPFs. Guided by Standard Operating Procedures, CPFs are open and inclusive platforms where discussions on security-related issues affecting the community take place to encourage joint problem solving and prevent disputes from escalating into violence. Representatives of civil society organizations are key actors in CPFs as they can bridge the gap between community and Government.
IOM guides CPFs to develop localized Security Safety Plans (SSPs). SSPs prioritize and identify solutions for the most important security and safety issues that can be jointly addressed by the community, the police and other security stakeholders.
Women, Peace and Security
IOM actively fosters the participation of women and girls in CPFs, by conducting security mappings to understand the trust networks of women, and perceptions of power and security dynamics between stakeholders at the community level. During trainings for law enforcement and community members, IOM ensures the participation and representation of women, with gender mainstreamed in training material and through separate trainings for women and youth community members. IOM also supports the Ministry of Interior to create a gender-sensitive policing strategic planning process.
Technical and Infrastructure Capacity Development
To assist police to maintain a presence in communities, IOM supports with infrastructure, vehicles and necessary police equipment. This includes building Community Police Offices, attached to the main police stations, that serve up to 5 CPFs within a 50-km radius. IOM also supports CP structural coordination, and consultation processes and institutional capacity building at local and national levels.
Housing, Land and Property (HLP) Assistance
IOM established HLP Assistance Centres, linked to the CPFs, to address IDPs and returnees’ lack of access, information, understanding and mechanisms to resolve HLP disputes that may escalate into violence or tension.
Government of Iraq, including the Kurdistan Regional Government, Ministry of Interior through the Community Policing Directorate and Departments, Border Points Commission
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