Clara Luz Flores Carrales: “It is necessary to systemise and professionalise corporations”

Municipal President of Escobedo, Nuevo León, México. She has a degree in Legal Sciences awarded by the Universidad Regiomontana and a Master’s qualification in Administrative Law from the University of Zaragoza, Spain.

 She has performed as a lecturer regarding Public Security and has participated in several courses involving Advanced Public Management.

A very noteworthy highlight of her career is the fact that she was one of the first female mayors to be re-elected in Mexico. Over different periods, she has been elected on three occasions as Municipal President of General Escobedo, Nuevo León.

She has been recognised by the National Conference of Municipal Public Security, as the Escobedo Security Model was selected for implementation all over Mexico, as a source of strategies for the prevention and reduction of violence, and the elimination of “criminal factories”.

What makes a person like you, with a solid social position, decide to concentrate her political activity on the fight against crime, violence and extortion, even to the extent that your life is continually put at risk (and that of a descendant)?

I believe that as citizens we must stand firm and act so that our environment can be a better one, and that we need to reject apathy and be proactive. And that’s why my conviction is participate, from my position, in an environment with a quality of life, peace and calm for my family, for my neighbours, for my community, for my state and, of course, for my country.

You are, at this moment, a real authority in the field of Public Security policies, but not only in your state, Nuevo León, but all over Mexico, as you have been appointed President of the National Conference of Security. What do you think your security strategy has that makes it appear to be an alternative, perhaps even a source of hope for security policies all over Mexico?

For me, the key is that this approach aims to get to the root of the insecurity problem: to prevent our children and young from seeing the criminal pathway as an alternative and, moreover, our strategy is comprehensive and bears in mind factors such as prevention, protecting people’s physical activity and their belongings based on analysis and investigation, focusing on social justice with the police force being trusted by the general public

No important person in the field of security questions the great work being done by General Lara as he completely transforms the Escobedo police force, bring it closer to the public and also more efficient when fighting crime. However, some are rather disappointed that your regarded turning to a high-ranking soldier to be the only solution to the Escobedo security problem. What would you say to these critics?

I would tell them that the incorporation of a soldier to conduct the secretariat took place in a context of extreme violence. From that outset, the strategy and the skills of police chiefs and their leaders have evolved with training and courses, meaning that the corporation is now a different one from top to bottom.

Another reason for taking this decision is that military training and its steely discipline results in ordered individuals who are driven by conviction to perform the tasks that they are assigned. Moreover, people have different learning capacities and potential to evolve and, in the case of the general, he already has a combination of police officer and soldier given the interdependent nature they each have.

From your double vantage point (mayor of Escobedo and president of the national Conference of Security), how do you feel about Mexico’s future in terms of security? What needs to happen to reverse the growing, in recent years, escalation of violence that is hitting the country? What formulas need to be applied at a federal level to add to such positive experiences like the one you have steered at a municipal level? Is the new National Guard a solution?

Corporations need to be systemised and professionalised, with processes and procedures being assessed on a regular basis, which is what has worked for us. Implementing an appropriate model in each municipality is vital because if the municipality assumes its responsibility a virtuous cycle will be created where each municipality, followed by the state and the Federation, which incidentally is aware and accepts this, work in order to redress this problem.

I think steps are being taken in the right direction to get out of this spiral. I am convinced that the model of municipal police force that is to be implemented in the country such as programmes to stop family and social violence have the necessary experience and methodological elements to achieve this.

The guard is one of the elements that is part of a group of actions that must be articulated on the part of municipalities as a model for a municipal police force and skills development.

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