Alternatives to Calling the Police

Compiled from Various Sources

Call a Friend, Not the Cops! There are a lot of situations that we are not equipped to face alone. We need someone’s help, but that someone does not have to be the police! So call a friend instead of the cops!

We should choose someone who can arrive quickly, help de-escalate the situation, and figure out “a comfortable ending.” This will work best if we set up support networks in advance. Designing our support network can be as simple as checking in with people we know to see who we can call when we need help or support, and letting folks know that they can call us.

The real beauty of this idea is that it encourages people to do something free and easy: build better communities by having an advance networking plan for who/when to call instead of the cops when stuff goes down. (rosecitycopwatch)

Think ahead: Have a team of people trained in harm reduction and crisis de-escalation at your event or party.
Situations that become violent or out of control can often be avoided if anti-oppressive intervention happens before things reach a crisis point. Local Crisis Intervention phone lines can also be an alternative in situations of immediate distress, but you should call only with the consent of the person in crisis.

Research and practise methods of restorative or transformative justice within your communities. By building up alternative methods of communication, problem solving, and crisis resolution within our organizations and groups, we rethink models of justice that rely on punishment, and can provide inspiration for larger societal changes.

Get your know your neighbours. Staying safe means looking out for each other, so start locally. Work together to make a neighbourhood that’s safe and welcoming for everyone, except the cops.