France tries to improve public safety with a new model: “la Police de sécurité du quotidien (PSQ)”

la Police de sécurité du quotidien (PSQ)The sense of insecurity is increasing among the French population: 66% of French citizens say that they feel insecure and 62% that the level of security is a key criterion when choosing a place to live.[1] To address this situation, the French Minister of the Interior, Gérard Collomb, presented a new model of public security police force on 8 February 2018, in this case primarily focusing on about sixty sensitive neighbourhoods. The launching of this new model is part of a framework involving reforms, which will also affect the judiciary, with a legal project that will review the penal procedure in the spring of 2018.

The new police model is underpinned by five pillars and involves the implementation of 55 interventions. We are going to stress some:

  • Pillar 1: A police force and a gendarmerie with new ambitions
  • 10,000 new police units between 2018 and 2022.
  • The suspension of some police tasks like static surveillance, the externalisation of tasks to the private sector and the substitution of police officers with administrative staff for certain support functions.
  • Pillar 2: A respected police force and a gendarmerie
  • Improving protection for police officers with more effective sanctions in the case of crimes against authority.
  • The coming into force of new measures of anonymization.
  • Introduction of measures to prevent police suicides: reinforcement of psychological support and more training to administer crisis and stressful situations more effectively.
  • A budget improvement with a triennial 2018-2020 plan of 900 million euros.
  • Reforming the police-training model, which reinforces the initial training models and harmonises training at different hierarchical levels in reference to both the national police force and the gendarmerie.
  • Police 3: A custom-made police force and gendarmerie
  • Reinforcement of policing in 60 sensitive neighbourhoods in several phases until 2020, which will involve an increase of 1,300 officers.
  • Introduction of strategies to combat local crime.
  • Making closer contact with the population with the development of 250 proximity units by 2019.
  • Improving attention to victims (adapting opening hours to the needs of the population, better training and adapting the premises used for this purpose).
  • Pillar 4: A connected police force and gendarmerie
  • Provision of 110,000 touch panels by 2020 and 800 new officers to fight against cyber threats.
  • Increase of 10,000 body-worn cameras for police uniforms by 2019.

The launching of a digital police group: a citizens’ information centre

  • In four languages and available 24 hours a day seven days a week.
  • The opening of a new platform to focus on sexual and sexist crime.
  • Pillar 5: A police force and a gendarmerie that cooperate with each other
  • Professional improvement of municipal policing and private security officers.
  • Better cooperation with mayors, especially those that administer neighbourhoods where the new public security model is being implemented.
  • Assessment of the new model of public security paying attention to the range of actors: prefects, universities and researchers, councillors, unions, police forces, entrepreneurs and the public in general.

For further information, the following links can be consulted:

[1] Data provided by the Institute of Independent Studies Odoxa.

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