Public Safety Audit


Summary and Charge

Recommendations and Action Steps

Progress on Key Recommendations



Temple University initiated an external, independent review of Campus Safety Services and the Temple University Police Department, focusing on its internal practices and procedures as well as its interactions with community members. 21CP Solutions was engaged to assess campus safety, policing, and community well-being through a wide-ranging review.

21CP began its work in earnest at Temple University in May 2022 when CSS was under the direction of then-Executive Director Charles Leone. The timing of 21CP’s work corresponded relatively closely with the onboarding of current Vice President of Public Safety, Dr. Jennifer Griffin. Consequently, the findings and state of operations that 21CP describes, in many instances, pre-date Dr. Griffin’s arrival and her initial efforts to make various changes to TUPD’s operations and public safety at Temple overall [see Public Safety Updates from January 2023 & March 2023.

The Public Safety Audit addresses TUPD and Public Safety as critical actors in the public safety infrastructure and ecosystem at Temple – but considers them as one of many University and Philadelphia resources that help to advance safety. As numerous aspects of 21CP’s review revealed and underscored, campus safety and the safety of the Philadelphia neighborhoods adjoining Temple are inextricably linked.

Even as faculty, staff, and students say they feel safe within the physical boundaries of the University’s campuses, fear and anxiety about off-campus safety impacts the campus community’s overall sense of well-being. This review was both necessary and timely, and one of several actions that Temple University will undertake to help protect its students, staff, faculty, and North Philadelphia community members. 

Methodology & Approach

During its engagement, 21CP reviewed a substantial array of written materials, including TUPD policies and procedures; considered data on public safety generally and TUPD’s operations specifically; and engaged with an array of campus stakeholders and community members from the North Philadelphia neighborhoods adjacent to Temple. The review included in-depth reviews and analysis of:

  • Crime, violence, and physical safety
  • TUPD critical actions
  • TUPD organization, administration, and officer support
  • TUPD engagement and coordination with outside entities

Many have shared important perspectives on Temple's role within the community. For North Philadelphia’s communities to be safe, Temple needs to help convene and organize a diversity of City and community stakeholders to focus on preventing crime and transforming the root causes of violence – without over-policing communities that have too often bore the burden of unfair, unjust, and inequitable policing practices. 

Following a thorough and extensive audit, 21CP crafted a series of recommendations grounded in best practices, emerging and promising public safety approaches, and an understanding of critical campus and community dynamics.

The safety and crime dynamics in which Temple operates are shaped by decades and generations of complex and interrelated factors. As Temple’s Violence Reduction Task Force observed in its October 2022 report, “there is a connection between crime and social and economic inequality and other effects of racism.”

21CP’s most general, but most critical recommendation, is that Temple must, modestly but with unflinching resolve, assert leadership and ensure that community members, Philadelphia stakeholders, and University community members alike come together and implement effective safety strategies – ones that promote police and residents, and University affiliates and community members, working together to co-produce public safety in North Philadelphia. Even where Temple does not have law enforcement authority or power, it has an interest in and must exert its influence toward ensuring safety.


The 21CP Recommendations for Community Safety at Temple University & the Temple University Police Department report provides Temple a list of 68 tactical recommendations. There are no easy answers or quick fixes to changing the underlying dynamics that occur with, influence, and are the root causes of violence and crime in North Philadelphia.

As such, there are a few recommendations that 21CP urges Temple to address immediately because they are critical both to improving safety and addressing the underlying factors contributing to the violence in the communities around Temple University:

  • Establish, implement, and sustain a safety partnership zone with the purpose of making the North Philadelphia area within the zone a safer, better place to live, work, and thrive.
  • Create a task force comprised of representatives of the University, the City, the PPD, DA's Office, and other state and federal law enforcement agencies to coordinate strategy and tactics to ensure that all safety resources are aligned in mission and scope.

A more detailed description of the audit recommendations are organized under the following priority categories:


The current job market to hire police officers is exceedingly difficult and there is a nationwide challenge for law enforcement agencies keeping up with attrition and retirements. Our strategy is grounded in recruiting and hiring the most qualified individuals to join our department while maintaining our current staffing through retention.

Key Recommendations:

  1. Create and staff a variety of training-focused positions to ensure robust, meaningful adoption of an enhanced officer training paradigm.
  2. Conduct a staffing analysis and implement a comprehensive staffing plan to ensure appropriate personnel and deployment of resources (including TUPD, Temple security, and Allied security)
  3. Develop a revised, codified deployment plan that gives greater emphasis to bike, foot, and other nonmotorized modes of patrol, based on call volume, and community needs.
  4. Grow the ranks of supervisor to ensure enhanced supervision across all shifts.
  5. Update policies and processes to support recruitment, hiring, promotion, retention, and incentivizing advanced educational opportunities and leadership development.
  6. Ensure better cohesion within and among Public Safety – both at the level of leadership and, especially, at the level of rank-and-file or in-the-field personnel.
  7. Explore creating a dedicated Employee Wellness Program to promote the mental and physical health and well-being of Departmental employees.
Training/Professional Development

One of the core components of the department's strategic plan includes increasing the training and professional development of public safety personnel based on their roles and responsibilities, and providing education to our various community members to raise awareness and capabilities.

Key Recommendations:

  1. Adopt and incorporate an enhanced, updated training paradigm grounded in adult learning techniques, skill-based instruction – including the use of integrated scenarios, group discussions, oral and verbal scenarios, interactive exercises, and evaluated opportunities to practice real-world situations.
  2. Renew cross-University resource preparedness and training plan to engage with the campus community on active shooter and major-incident preparedness. These initiatives should involve PPD as a critical partner.
  3. Create and staff a variety of training-focused positions to ensure robust, meaningful adoption of an enhanced officer training paradigm.
  4. Develop an individualized training plan for every TUPD employee that reflects and incorporates mandatory requirements for certifications, opportunities for employee development, and instruction that addresses performance improvement needs.
  5. Review current sexual assault services available to victims to ensure all aspects are trauma-informed, victim-centered, and multi-disciplinary. All TUPD personnel should receive training on the Department’s policies and procedures regarding the response to an investigation of sexual assault and harassment incidents. The training should address topics including the effects of trauma on memory, victim-centered interaction techniques, and services available for victims and the referral process.
  6. Strengthen and expand the training that it provides to new employees by updating and strengthening the FTO program, and including in the initial FTO or on-the-job period an opportunity for new employees to rotate among various functions (dispatch, investigations, patrol, etc.)
  7. Develop and implement joint training across all public safety entities – including but not limited to TUPD, Temple security, Allied security, and other campus entities with response duties, such as Residential Advisors.
  8. Develop and provide regular, ongoing, and more robust training to Allied security personnel to ensure a more unified, strategic safety response across public safety services on campus

Many campus community members say that they generally feel safe when they are within the boundaries of Temple’s physical campus. For instance, in a Spring 2022 survey, more than four out of five (81%) “of respondents living in University-owned residence halls reported feeling safe in their area of residence” on campus.

The visibility of campus security and police officers, the presence of other community members, access to “blue light” emergency telephones, and lighting were the most commonly-cited factors that impact feelings of safety on campus.

Key Recommendations:

  1. Conduct a comprehensive assessment of TUPD’s current technology and develop a plan to ensure that the Department’s technology aligns with the mission, vision, and needs, and interfaces with other police and University systems.
  2. Technology & Equipment Plan to address software and hardware requirements; new, replacement, and maintenance requirements; and annual review as part of the budget process.

Assessment and Plan to include vehicle fleet, a records management and case management system, and the technology and equipment needs of the communications


Many campus community members also say that the University’s communication and information-sharing about public safety issues and incidents could be enhanced.

The Task Force on 21st Century Policing found that, ““community policing,” is something more than a series of disconnected programs, an isolated assignment, or sporadic “extracurricular” activities. Instead, “community policing” should refer to the basic way that public safety personnel conduct their work…a philosophy that focuses on identifying, engaging, and working with community members to address community problems and issues. In this way, real “community policing” is not just a standalone activity or a set of outreach initiatives but rather a core approach that “should be infused throughout the culture and organizational structure of law enforcement agencies.”

Key Recommendations:

  1. Craft strategic communications and outreach initiatives aimed at ensuring that TU stakeholders understand the distinct, important roles of various public safety services on campus
  2. Ensure improved, enhanced communication, information-sharing, and training between and among TUPD and Allied Security personnel.
  3. Improve communication, information-sharing, and training between and among University leaders and Public Safety. There can be significant consequences to leaders and officers from different departments interacting for the first time during an emergency or moment of crisis. Confusion about responsibilities, lines of authority, and overall response protocols can complicate and adversely impact the ability of to respond as effectively as may be required.
  4. Conduct joint training and cross-trainings with City of Philadelphia safety resources and Temple safety responders.
  5. Develop and utilize a comprehensive Community Engagement and Partnership plan that communicates and coordinates its internal and external public safety engagement and partnership efforts.
  6. Cultivate community engagement and problem-solving to be a department-wide philosophy, with each member of the department an important part of these efforts – rather than operating as a specialized “unit” isolated from TUPD’s other work.
  7. Develop and implement joint training across all public safety entities – including but not limited to TUPD, Temple security, Allied security, and other campus entities with response duties, such as Residential Advisors.
  8. Develop and provide regular, ongoing, and more robust training to Allied security personnel to ensure a more unified, strategic safety response across public safety services on campus.
Collaboration and Communication

Key takeaways from both the 21CP audit and the Violence Reduction Taks Force focus on the critical importance of collaboration:

  • Establishing, implementing, and sustaining a Temple-Community Safety Partnership Zone with the purpose of making the North Philadelphia area within the patrol zone a safer, better place to live, work, and thrive. This partnership must be comprised of members representing Temple, City entities, institutional stakeholders like non-profits, businesses, and community residents that work together in the “co-production” of public safety.
  • Creating a Response Resource Task Force comprised of representatives of the University, the City, the Philadelphia Police Department (“PPD”), District Attorney’s Office, and other state and federal law enforcement agencies, among others. The Task Force should coordinate strategy and tactics and ensure that all safety resources are aligned in terms of mission and scope


Because safety is Temple University's highest priority, we are pleased to share some of the measurable progress made to date:

  • Engaged with the Philadelphia Police Department to provide more strategic deployment of supplementary patrol services in the North Philadelphia communities adjacent to Temple.
  • Awarded $1.77M for safety infrastructure enhancements through a local law enforcement support grant from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD) to expand security camera coverage, technology tools, body worn cameras, and license plate readers.
  • Streamlined and expanded efforts to provide enhanced services to local landlords and business owners in alignment with Temple’s deterrence-oriented, collaborative, and problem-solving approaches to community safety including the Best Nest Program; an expansion of FLIGHT evening off-campus shuttle service; and a security upgrade grant program for area landlords to fund the installation of lighting and/or cameras on private residences near campus. 
  • Reorganization and enhancement of the public safety organizational chart to bring on over a dozen strategic and tactical leadership and operational positions, while also aggressively hiring qualified individuals to fulfill open police officer positions.
  • Launched new Public Safety website to improve transparency and enhance accessibility of information & resources
  • Engaging students and parents about how to make informed decisions when selecting off-campus housing locations.
  • Exploring a re-imagined, differential response model for on campus calls for service and issues – seeking to match the right University response to each problem. Temple's Mental Health and Wellness Task Force recommended and supports a co-responder model of crisis response by pairing a mental health professional with a campus safety officer.
  • Welcomed 8 new officers in March 2023 including 3 Temple alumni, eager to give back to Temple and the North Philadelphia community.
  • Establishing recruitment and retention bonuses to attract and retain officers who align with our mission and values.
  • Expanding the messaging and communications to our various stakeholders.