City Police, strengths and challenges

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Image of police officers of the City of Buenos Aires during training
Image of police officers of the City of Buenos Aires during training

In the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires On Friday, November 17, the seventh anniversary of the enactment of Law No. 5,688 was celebrated, which established the Comprehensive Public Security System and created the City Policeestablishing the legal and institutional foundations of citizen security.

Safety is the individual's own and inalienable duty. Buenos Aires Statewhich must arbitrate the means to safeguard the freedom, integrity and rights of people, as well as preserve public order, implementing policies aimed at ensuring coexistence and strengthening social cohesion, enabling the enjoyment and full exercise, by people, of the freedoms, rights and guarantees constitutionally enshrined.

It should be noted that the concept of security has undergone transformations throughout history to respond to the reality of each era and state and social needs. Police institutions and those responsible face the challenge of contributing to configuring safer, more habitable environments with higher degrees of social cohesion and integration with the community to achieve social peace.

Many police organizations and especially their leadership have a historical distance from citizens, who are perceived as a distant, indifferent and disconnected figure from the needs and requirements of the inhabitants. The citizen security paradigm is a joint construction between the community and its police, and constitutes a constitutional guarantee.

In this sense, the innovative Law No. 5688 establishes the following as guiding principles of the new citizen security body: civil government, proximity, citizen participation, innovation, transparency, prevention, debureaucratization, effectiveness and efficiency.

Among the most differentiating from other police models, the principle of “civil government” of public security stands out, which basically consists of the exercise of control and supervision by civilians - without a police state - of institutional management, administration, governance, the development of the training process and the training of all participants in the comprehensive security system. Likewise, this guiding principle has guaranteed during these seven years a high degree of citizen participation in decision-making and the construction of citizen security jointly between the community and its police.

Police patrol cars of the City of Buenos Aires (TĂ©lam)
Police patrol cars of the City of Buenos Aires (TĂ©lam)

On the other hand, Law No. 5,688 highlights the incorporation of the system of “checks and balances”, typical of constitutional theory, which interrelates public powers in a framework of multiple balances and cross controls between the components of the Comprehensive System of Security. Among them we find different instances: the one carried out by the Security Commission of the Legislature of the City of Buenos Aires; the control of neighbors in the process of appointing the Chief of Police of the City; the control of the Office of Transparency and External Control of the City Police by a civilian; control in relation to transparency and accountability, through sworn asset declarations; control through neighborhood participation in the Public Security Forums -FOSEP- and the Nearby Police Stations Program.

Seven years after the sanction of the transformative Law No. 5,688, which creates the Police of the City of Buenos Aires, under a new model of police administration in Argentina, it can be affirmed that the assumption of citizen security by the Government Buenos Aires, contributed to an undoubted improvement in the quality of security service, but we are also convinced that the system requires continuing to make the necessary adjustments to increase citizen security, understanding the latter as well-being and the free exercise of citizen rights.

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Nathan Rivera
Allow me to introduce myself. I am Nathan Rivera, a dedicated journalist who has had the privilege of writing for the online newspaper Today90. My journey in the world of journalism has been a testament to the power of dedication, integrity, and passion.

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