Jackson 2020

How can you get involved with the Community Safety strand?
Contact Adam Brown at abrown@co.jackson.mi.us

The purpose of the safe community strand is to ensure that Jackson County is a partnership of self-sustaining people with shared values where residents peacefully coexist and participate in all aspects of life. Citizens know how to access a wide variety of services when needed. Jackson is a safe community where public safety presence is felt but not needed – a great place to live, work, and play. The safe community strategy focuses on communication & education, prevention and enforcement, and community empowerment.

Safe Community Mission

Jackson County is a partnership of self-sustaining people with shared values where residents peacefully co-exist and participate in a vibrant community. Jackson County strives to provide prompt professional emergency services and access to the criminal justice system without delays and barriers.

Challenges

  • Police and fire services by their nature are labor intensive and, as such, are costly to administer and frequently the first to be cut.
  • Few functions can be automated without:
    - Reduction of service
    - Making the process confusing
  • Technological Solutions
    - Can be costly
    - Difficult to implement
    - Often have recurring costs
    - Rapidly become outdated and/or no longer supported
  • Potential staff reductions
  • Public safety relies heavily upon information technology (IT) services and technological solutions which tend to be expensive
  • Shrinking revenue
  • Interdepartmental cooperation crumble without support from stakeholders
  • Public perception versus reality

Moving Forward

  • How do we overcome the identified challenges?
  • Recommendations should be a balance of fiscal responsibility and service to the community.
  • Goals need to be achievable, realistic and consistent with strategic goals and mission statement.
  • Intergovernmental cooperatives must be encouraged and permitted to develop at a reasonable pace.

Conclusion

In Jackson County, public safety entities have a long history of cooperation predating the discussion of a strategic plan. There are many examples throughout the community. The desire to strengthen these partnerships in the face of tightening budgets is high. The challenge is to keep this focus when economic recovery occurs. The task then is to keep stakeholders engaged in the discussion and to work in concert to accomplish the mission of the Safe Communities group creating an atmosphere where economic development and education can flourish.