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Negotiating Demands

Negotiating Demands: Politics of Skid Row Policing in Edinburgh, San Francisco, and Vancouver

Copyright Date: 2007
Pages: 260
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  • Book Info
    Negotiating Demands
    Book Description:

    Negotiating Demandsis an original and thought-provoking study that not only advances our knowledge of police organization and decision-making strategies but also refines our understanding of how processes of social inclusion and exclusion occur in different liberal regimes and how they can be addressed.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-2769-7
    Subjects: Sociology

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Acknowledgments
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. List of Tables
    (pp. ix-x)
  5. List of Illustrations
    (pp. xi-2)
  6. Introduction: Shooting Up on Adam Smith’s Grave
    (pp. 3-8)

    The Canongate Kirk in Edinburgh is a beautiful old church: a classical Georgian design of grey stone, columns, and lovely red doors, nestled behind a paved stone entrance and majestic elms. The Kirk keeps celebrated company, as it sits between Edinburgh Castle at one end of the city’s celebrated Royal Mile and the famous Holyrood Palace, once home to the rather unfortunate Mary, Queen of Scots. Surrounding this beautiful grey church is its Kirkyard, the present home of many of the city’s former illustrious citizens. Within family crypts and behind upright stones, most weathered over centuries and some carved with...

  7. 1 Inclusion, Exclusion, and the Policing of the Skids
    (pp. 9-37)

    As the two preceding interview excerpts illustrate, exclusion and the stigmatization that is carried with it are part of the daily reality of many people. These are individuals who routinely experience verbal harassment, as well as mental, sexual, and physical threats and violence. This abuse is directed at them from members of the so-called mainstream society, who cling to the privilege of their social inclusion while abasing those not similarly placed. In the first example, a street beggar in Edinburgh describes a routine experience: having his begging hat – the symbol of his exclusion – kicked [degraded] by members of the public....

  8. 2 Alkies, Smackheads, and Ordos: Skid Row under Ordoliberalism
    (pp. 38-55)

    In this chapter and the next, I analyse Edinburgh’s political economy as representative of key characteristics of theOrdoliberalenmodel. The first section outlines the political, historical, geographical, and social dimensions of the Cowgate/Grassmarket in order to provide a context for understanding the present study and the dynamics of inclusion and exclusion that are played out ‘on the ground’ in this community. To this end, aside from discussing the site’s history and geography, I also describe its current inhabitants, attempting, if only modestly, to illuminate aspects of their world for the reader. Following this, I provide a brief discussion of...

  9. 3 Community Policing as Knowledge Work
    (pp. 56-83)

    The primary purpose of this chapter is to explore the conception of police as ‘demand negotiators’ through an examination of the ways in which the Lothian and Borders (L&B) regional police force in Edinburgh respond to inclusionary and exclusionary demands directed at Edinburgh’s skid row residents. I argue throughout that the style of policing used here is reflective of the larger institutional environment: it is one that is mainly consonant with elements of theOrdoliberalenpolitical model, significant aspects of which are found within the larger political culture. However, while the L&B model privileges inclusionary work through the use of...

  10. 4 Junkies, Drunks, and the American Dream: Neo-liberal Skid Row
    (pp. 84-100)

    I have previously described San Francisco as representative, in many significant aspects, of the American form of neo-liberal governance. Throughout this chapter, I attempt to justify this characterization through an analysis of local politics and with reference to the ways in which the coercively inclusive/exclusionary nature of these politics is articulated in measures directed against the city’s poor. I proceed as follows. First, I describe the political, historical, geographical, and social dimensions of the research site in order to contextualize its key elements and the demands it produces. I then examine more fully the range of inclusionary-exclusionary demands that San...

  11. 5 Enforcing the Law with Broken Windows
    (pp. 101-131)

    In this chapter the role of the police as ‘demand negotiators’ is explored through an examination of the ways in which the San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) responds to inclusionary and exclusionary demands directed at the Tenderloin’s skid row residents. The style of policing in this community is, again, consonant with the larger institutional environment in that it embodies key elements of the values and philosophies underlying the American variant of neo-liberalism. In particular, the policing of status offences (quality-of-life bylaws) is work that is at once both coercively inclusive and exclusionary.

    The following section offers an introduction to the...

  12. 6 Crazies, Crack Addicts, and the ‘Middle Way’
    (pp. 132-148)

    The current political situation in Vancouver could best be described as an incomplete mixture of Canadian welfarism and U.S. neo-liberalism – that is, as a ‘middle way’ between these two forms of governance. Throughout this chapter, I expand on this characterization through a discussion of some of the ways in which this unique political configuration has affected this city’s skid row district.

    As in previous chapters, I discuss the political, historical, geographical, and social dimensions of the research site in order to contextualize the demands it produces. I then examine the most salient demands made of, by, for, and against inhabitants...

  13. 7 Peacekeeping through Saturation
    (pp. 149-179)

    In this chapter I explore the police as ‘demand negotiators’ through an analysis of the responses of the Vancouver Police Department (VPD) to inclusionary and exclusionary demands directed at and produced by Vancouver’s skid row residents. I advance the argument that the VPD’s style of policing mirrors the institution’s larger political and economic environment: it reflects aspects of both welfarism and the U.S. variant of neo-liberalism, melding both inclusionary and exclusionary goals in its policies and practices. Thus, we see a force that has recently adopted a saturation policing model on skid row – a mode of policing that is typically...

  14. 8 Policing as the Art of Negotiating Demands
    (pp. 180-208)

    The conceptualization of police as ‘demand negotiators’ arose from my understanding of the political dimensions of policing, particularly within contested sites where police are called upon to respond to often contradictory sets of inclusionary-exclusionary demands from groups that define themselves as ‘the community.’ As a contested site, skid row became the primary focus for this study because it is here that we can often see this polarization most clearly with resident and business groups frequently demanding exclusion, skid row denizens and community groups issuing inclusionary counter-demands, and a range of city officials supporting public policies that fall along the continuum...

  15. 9 ‘A Community Gets the Policing That It Wants’
    (pp. 209-216)

    In the previous pages I explored how conflicting demands shape the nature of policing of skid row communities. In doing so, I advanced three claims. The first claim was that contrary to recent critiques of neo-liberalism, exclusion and inclusion are twin strategies for enforcing group solidarity and thus are social facts found to varying degrees within all societies. I rested this claim on empirical data drawn from three examples of one of the most excluded of communities – skid row districts – where demands are routinely generated of and within these sites across different civic environments. My second claim was that the...

  16. Appendix: Research Methods
    (pp. 217-222)
  17. Notes
    (pp. 223-230)
  18. References
    (pp. 231-246)
  19. Index
    (pp. 247-253)