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Boise Police On the Big Screen

BPD Officer and child


The City of Boise is proud to be a welcoming city and proud of our diverse community. Refugees from all walks of life have come to call Boise their home and our Police Department has been integral in helping create a safe and welcoming community for them.

Members of the Boise Police Department were featured in a recent documentary called American Beat: Cops and Refugees Join Forces in Boise.  The Carnegie Corporation of New York learned about BPD’s outreach efforts with the refugee community and came to Boise with their producer and photographers to capture the story.  Over several trips to Boise, the plans for the story grew into a 26-minute documentary accompanied by a long form article in their magazine Carnegie Reporter. A screening of the documentary was held Tuesday evening at Boise State University and was followed by a panel discussion.

The documentary weaves together the local police department’s commitment to support immigrants: the groundbreaking efforts of the officers to integrate and mentor refugees; the determination of a former Iraqi translator for the US Military who is putting down roots with his family and hoping to become a police officer; and the story of Boise, itself, coming together to show refugees from war-torn Africa and the Middle East that, in America, a united community can conquer tragedy and hate. All these only capture a snapshot of the hard work done by the BPD.

Screening at BSU


The Boise Police Department’s Refugee Liaison position and additional community policing efforts in refugee communities were nationally recognized in 2017 by the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) as well as the Carnegie Corporation of New York (CCNY).  The refugee outreach and engagement program expanded in 2017 to include a 10-week Refugee Mentoring Program which paired members of our local refugee community with police officers. 

The Boise Police Department has had a Refugee Liaison Officer position for over a decade.  The Liaison Officer works to break down barriers, develop trust and serve as a positive role model for refugee children.  They are available for direct reporting of crimes and incidents, assists with ongoing investigations involving members of the refugee community and keeps other members of the police department informed on safety issues affecting refugees. Additionally, the liaison officer trains other members of the department on the unique sensitivities often required when responding to calls involving refugees, and speaks to community service groups about how refugees arrive in Boise and opportunities to welcome and assist them. The goal of the Refugee Liaison program is to help Boise’s newest residents safely and successfully transition into a city, state and country that provides them unequaled opportunities for a healthy and prosperous future.  


Filming documentary


American Beat: Cops and Refugees Join Forces in Boise

Preview the documentary from the Carnegie Corporation


Published: February 07, 2018