The mission of the Houston Police Department is to enhance the quality of life in the city of Houston by working cooperatively with the public to prevent crime, enforce the law, preserve the peace, and provide a safe environment.
At the SBFDC, HPD partners in several ways to further this mission.
Houston Police Department’s Hispanic Interaction Program (HIP) is a bilingual/bi-cultural program created to foster trust and friendship relationship between the police and the Hispanic/Latino community through interactive education initiatives. The goal of the program is to establish communication and reduce crime. The program places special emphasis on working with people with limited English-speaking abilities.
Within the HIP Program, HPD officers increase their community presence, is by visiting the Harris County Adult ESL classes every session. At their visit, they answer questions, explain the role of the police, build rapport, and create connection points to help create a safer community.
One of the most profound experiences for many of our clients was their experience learning about a HPD officer’s day-to-day experience, including putting on HPD officer gear and sitting in the front of the patrol car. This experience gave community adults a greater understanding of a police officer’s perspective and experience.
As a model of community policing, the HIP program has seen so much success that the HPD used the community around SBFDC to model and train officers visiting from El Salvador.
In addition, HPD police officers regularly work at Boys and Girls Club; this interaction builds rapport, trust, and gives the youth exposure to their local officers during critical years of their growth and development.
As there are many different nationalities who live around the SBFDC – many whose countries operate with quite different models and experiences with local police – these interactions help to build more open, trusting, and healthy relationships, and a safer community.
For more information about the HIP Program, call 832-394-0100,to reach the HPD Spring Branch Storefront.