Procedural justice and policing: building trust in South Africa’s police

This report outlines procedural justice as a means to improve community-police relations and, in turn, public safety.

Trust in the police is vital to a functioning democracy, but relations between South Africa’s residents and police have long been characterised by mistrust. This report introduces procedural justice as a cost-effective, evidence-informed practice that can increase public trust and confidence in the police, and enhance police legitimacy and social cohesion. The report provides an overview of the theory and presents data on trust, customer satisfaction and police morale in South Africa.

About the authors

Jody van der Heyde is a Research Consultant in the Justice and Violence Prevention Programme at the ISS.

Andrew Faull is a Senior Researcher in the Justice and Violence Prevention Programme at the ISS.

Martin Sycholt is the Director of Policy and Research at the Eastern Cape Department of Community Safety.

Image: © Adapted from SAPS

Development partners
This report is funded by the Hanns Seidel Foundation and Bavarian State Chancellery. The ISS is grateful for support from the members of the ISS Partnership Forum: the Hanns Seidel Foundation, the European Union, the Open Society Foundations and the governments of Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden.
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