Defining a Problem

First-Generation Change Agents
  • Hans Toch
  • J. Douglas Grant


Two groups of relative strangers—seven officers and three civilians—convened at 4 p.m. on an early summer Wednesday in the imposing Oakland police headquarters building. One of us civilians gave a rousing welcoming speech outlining the violence reduction project. We promised the officers that we would not tell them what to do, but that we would provide resources and help. We acknowledged that the group could face some tough assignments, some tense moments, and understandable problems of trust, but we assured the officers that if they stuck with it, they might learn a great deal from their involvement.


Staff Member Police Officer Tense Moment Police Work Training Officer 


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  1. 1.
    The focus on arrests for resisting arrest (PC 148) confirms that the officers regarded such arrests as a plausible measure of police-citizen confrontations. In other words, the officers assumed that the charge (resisting arrest) would be lodged if a physical conflict had occurred.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hans Toch
    • 1
  • J. Douglas Grant
    • 2
  1. 1.State University of New YorkAlbanyUSA
  2. 2.Social Action Research CenterNicasioUSA

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