331.00 SERVICE IMPROVEMENT OPPORTUNITIES
A complaint received from a community member regarding allegations of poor quality of service or minor rules violations that, if sustained, would not result in discipline may be handled as a Service Improvement Opportunity (SIO). The goal of the SIO process is to improve service delivery by addressing citizens’ concerns and perceptions with the involved officer(s) in a way that satisfies the complainant. SIOs are considered non-disciplinary in nature.
An SIO may be generated by Independent Police Review (IPR), Internal Affairs (IA), or at the RU level upon receipt of a qualifying complaint from a community member.
IA Manager’s Responsibilities:
Upon receipt of a complaint qualifying for handling as an SIO from either IPR or a community member, assign the SIO to the involved member’s RU for resolution.
Upon receipt of the completed SIO Resolution Memo from the RU, review it and either:
Return the case to the RU for any additional information or action needed.
Decline approval of the SIO resolution and refer the case for an IA investigation (for RU-generated SIOs).
Approve the memo and forward the case to IPR with a recommendation to approve the resolution as an SIO.
Forward the case to IPR with a recommendation that IPR dismiss the complaint if it meets the criteria for dismissal listed in Directive 330.00.
Upon final case approval from IPR, close the IA case file.
Maintain case files for all completed SIO cases. SIO files may be purged pursuant to Directive 332.00.
RU Manager’s Responsibilities:
Upon receipt of an SIO, assign the case to a supervisor.
Review all completed SIO case files and forward them to IA once approved.
Ensure that SIOs are completed within 14 days of receipt at the RU.
Identify specific quality of service issues and/or minor rule violations.
Make a good faith effort to contact the complainant to discuss the complaint. Generally, supervisors should make at least three attempts at contact.
Meet with each involved member:
Discuss the incident and review any available reports.
Explain the community member’s perception of the member’s behavior.
Critique the member’s actions and provide any available input for service delivery improvement.
Convey the Bureau’s and RU manager’s expectations regarding quality of service and compliance with rules.
Discuss alternative approaches for improving public satisfaction with service.
Follow up with the complainant and explain the resolution of the complaint.
Document these discussions, as well as any unsuccessful attempts to contact the complainant, in an SIO Resolution Memo.
If a supervisor, after completing an IPR/IA initiated SIO, concludes that the complaint is unfounded or a member has been misidentified as having been involved in an incident, the supervisor will document the conclusion and the reasoning behind it in the SIO Resolution Memo.
RU-Generated Service Improvement Opportunities
All RU-generated SIOs from the public shall be documented in a Bureau-approved complaint log. RU managers will ensure that copies of complaint logs are retained at the division for three years. An example of the complaint log can be found on the Bureau’s Intranet.
A supervisor receiving a complaint meeting the criteria for an SIO will process the complaint in the same manner as an SIO referred by IPR/IA. The supervisor will document the complaint resolution in an SIO Resolution Memo and forward it, through channels, to the RU manager for approval. The RU manager will, upon approval, forward the memo to IA.
Complaints to an RU alleging disparate treatment, excessive force, criminal conduct, or other serious misconduct will not be handled as SIOs. A supervisor receiving such a complaint shall document it in a memo and send the complaint directly to IA. IA will forward the complaint to IPR for further review and action pursuant to Directive 330.00.
The RU manager may decline to process a precinct generated complaint about a minor rules violation if the member met the RU manager’s highest expectations for quality and courtesy of service, and the complaint falls into one of the following categories:
1. The conduct, as alleged by the complainant, was in full compliance with Bureau policy and training.
2. The citizen is contesting his/her guilt with respect to a citation for a traffic offense.
3. The complaint is grossly illogical or improbable on its face.
4. There is no reasonable possibility of identifying the member involved in the complaint.
5. The complaint was previously handled, resolved, or adjudicated and the complainant has presented no new information that was not previously considered.
The supervisor will make a good faith effort to contact the complainant to explain why the conduct or service was proper or why the complaint has been declined. An SIO Resolution Memo is not required. The declined complaint does not need to be reported to IA or IPR. The declination will be fully documented in the complaint log.
RESPONSIBILITY, ACCOUNTABILITY, AND CONTROL (331.00)
Each RU manager will ensure that SIOs received by his/her RU are processed in a timely manner and in accordance with this directive. IA will periodically audit precinct service complaint logs, including contacting citizens to ensure that log entries are accurate and complete.
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