After consulting with independent experts in progressive policing reform and benchmarking against the most reform-minded policing policies and procedures nationwide, the Johns Hopkins Police Department (JHPD) developed draft policies to guide its day-to-day work.   

As part of our commitment to transparency, accountability, and community engagement, Johns Hopkins launched a community-oriented feedback process that included a 90-day public comment period for the first group of policies, which concluded on December 20, 2023, and a 60-day public comment period for the second group, which concluded on January 29, 2024.

We are now hard at work reviewing and adopting, incorporating, or otherwise reflecting recommended changes and feedback in the final version of policies that are aligned with JHU values and commitments, permissible within legal parameters, and supported by national best practices for community policing and public safety.

We will publish the final policies and procedures online, along with a report detailing the community feedback we received and adopted.

We are committed to improving our policies continuously, and policy development is an ongoing process. For this reason, we will be regularly reviewing and updating our policies. Even after the public comment periods close, we continue to welcome your input and feedback via email to or the JHPS feedback form, Contact Public Safety.

We remain dedicated to implementing policies that community advocates and leading experts have advanced in nationwide law enforcement reform efforts.   

Policy Feedback Process

To guide the development and refinement of JHPD policies, we sought input from our community to ensure transparency and engagement through an extensive community-oriented feedback process from September 2023 through January 2024.  

On April 27, 2023, Dr. Bard hosted a virtual forum to outline the policy development and feedback process. A forum recording is available on the Public Safety Virtual Events page. The presentation on the policy process can be found here.

Before being available for public review and comment, all draft policies were shared with the JH Accountability Board. Board members were invited to provide feedback on the draft policies in writing and during the Board’s public meetings.

All the feedback obtained during this process will be documented and published in a report, along with the final policies, for everyone to access online.   

Outside experts, 21CP Solutions, prepared the following questions to help prompt discussion of the draft policies. 

  • Is this policy consistent with the values and needs of the community? 
  • Does this policy help JHPD safely carry out its stated mission?  
  • Is this policy understandable? Are there any points that need clarification? 
  • Is there anything that needs to be addressed in this policy that isn’t currently reflected in the draft?  

Our community also heard from nationally recognized experts on progressive policing reforms and learned more about the draft policies during our “Ask the Experts” sessions, which allowed the public to engage on JHPD-specific policy questions before submitting their feedback.  

The first of two sessions, “University Policing, Policy, and Getting it Right,” featured a conversation between Dr. Bard and Dr. Robin Engel, a nationally respected criminologist who has spent more than two decades working in policing research designed to reduce harm in communities and make police-community encounters safer.   

The second and last session featured a conversation between Dr. Bard and James Whalen, who retired in 2022 as the Director of Public Safety and Chief of Police at the University of Cincinnati. James Whalen worked for nearly 30 years at the Cincinnati Police Department before joining the university and played a significant role in the development and implementation of reform measures at both the Cincinnati Police Department and the University of Cincinnati.

Timeline [1] 

April 2023

May 2023

  • May 31 – Conclusion of 2022-2023 Johns Hopkins Accountability Board term 

June 2023  

  • June 1 – Start of 2023-2024 Johns Hopkins Accountability Board term  
  • June 30 – Johns Hopkins Accountability Board New Member Orientation

September 2023  

  • September 21 – First tranche of draft policies posted online for public comment

October 2023  

November 2023 

December 2023 

January 2024

  • January 29 – Public comment period for second tranche of draft policies closed

[1] Timeline and projected finalization of community-informed policies may be subject to change 

Draft Policies

The draft JHPD policies are based on examples of 21st-century best practices in public safety policy, identified through extensive benchmarking of university and municipal law enforcement agencies across the nation. Taken together, they represent a comprehensively progressive approach to policing that prioritizes equity, transparency, accountability, and community-based public safety strategies.

The draft policies were drafted to exceed the minimum requirements of the Constitution and laws of the United States and the State of Maryland, to align with the Community Safety and Strengthening Act (CSSA), and to fulfill the requirements of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Johns Hopkins University and the Baltimore Police Department.

Material that was considered in the drafting of these policies include: 

  • Publicly available policies from municipal police departments that have undergone substantial reform efforts, including the New Orleans Police Department, Seattle Police Department, Portland Police Department, Detroit Police Department, Ferguson Police Department, and Baltimore Police Department;
  • National guidance on best practices and model policies from criminal justice reform efforts, social science research centers, and civil rights organizations, including the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights; American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), including the ACLU of Massachusetts’s “Racially Just Policing: Model Policies for Colleges and Universities”; the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP); the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF); U.S. Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office); The Justice Collaboratory (The JC) at Yale University Law School; and The Center for Innovation in Community Safety (CICS) at Georgetown Law School.
  • National and local higher education institutions that are based in comparable environments and make policies publicly available, including: Carnegie Mellon University; Morgan State University; Towson University; University of Chicago; University of Cincinnati; University of Maryland, Baltimore County; University of Pennsylvania; and Yale University.

To ensure that the proposed directives captured national best practices in community-focused public safety services, the development team collaborated with independent experts from the National Policing Institute (the Institute), a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing excellence in policing through research and innovation, and 21CP Solutions, an expert consulting team made up of former law enforcement personnel, academics, civil rights lawyers, and community leaders dedicated to advancing safe, fair, equitable, and inclusive public safety solutions. Each directive was reviewed by experts selected by both organizations, who provided feedback, suggestions, and edits that were fully incorporated into the current draft.

Finally, individuals and organizations representing the diversity of the University community provided feedback to ensure the policies and procedures reflect and respond to the values of our institution and our community’s public safety service needs.

First Tranche

(Posted September 21, 2023; Public Comment Period Closed December 20, 2023

Conduct & Responsibility

Administrative Procedures

Personnel Procedures

Operational Procedures

Second Tranche

(Posted November 30, 2023; Public Comment Period Closed January 29, 2024) 

Conduct & Responsibility

Administrative Procedures

Personnel Procedures

Operational Procedures