Several Canadian cities are figuring out that people respond better to positive reinforcement, more so than punishment. This has caused police to start a radical new approach that actually motivates youth instead of creating a divide by harassing them.
By significantly rewarding more good deeds than punishing the bad ones, police departments have created the Positive Ticketing Campaign. When a police officer witnesses a youth engaged in positive behavior or conducting a good deed, the officer issues a Positive Ticket to the good Samaritan along with a handshake and a thank you.
In Toronto, the police have been issuing positive tickets since 2013.
The Positive Tickets idea started with a simple vision—imagine cops catching kids for doing things right! Imagine police officers hunting for the positive in youth, instead of just the negative.
Ward Clapham is a 28-year retired veteran of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police whose vision was inspired by Keith Pattinson, master storyteller and teacher, when he heard Pattinson speak on the 40 Developmental Assets™.
Hundreds of thousands of Positive Tickets later, Ward has seen his simple vision grow into a reality with enviable results. The principles of this innovative approach have been proven to significantly reduce juvenile problems in a community, boost self-esteem and morale, improve community relations with youth, and lower juvenile crime costs.
In some instances these positive tickets actually come with more than just recognition, some are issued with a tangible reward. The tickets are actually coupons or gift certificates donated by local businesses that are redeemable for items or experiences like a Prince Albert Raiders game, movie at Galaxy Cinemas, Slurpee, french fries, hamburger or ice cream cone.
The most recent city to join the campaign of positive ticketing was Prince Albert, Saskatchewan.
Here’s another instance of police ticketing in Nanaimo, British Columbia.
Imagine that. Instead of police seeing people as the enemy or as a source for revenue generation, they seek out good behavior and award it, and it’s changing these communities for the better.
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Contributed by Matt Agorist of The Free Thought Project.