Commitment to Youth
D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education)
Specially-trained Abington police officers teach the D.A.R.E. curriculum in all Abington School District facilities as well as five private schools located within the Township. With twenty uniformed officers providing instruction at a dozen area schools, Abington is the only police agency in Pennsylvania that offers D.A.R.E. to 100% of its local elementary, middle, and high school students.
For further information about the Abington Police Department’s D.A.R.E. Program, email Community Policing Officer Alison Gontowski or call 267-536-1080.
Abington Police Department Police Athletic League (PAL)
The Abington Police Athletic League (PAL), a non-profit community organization formed in 2001, seeks to prevent juvenile crime and violence while encouraging personal growth among our young people. PAL centers, staffed by APD and community volunteers, offer structured, personal guidance in a safe, friendly environment. PAL offers a wide range of physical and intellectual activities that address the needs of Abington’s youth.
Providing positive adult role models is a critical component of our PAL efforts. In Abington, law enforcement officers and community volunteers work with young people to encourage positive development as members of the local community.
While Abington PAL is sponsored through the Abington Township Police Department, PAL receives no direct funding. As such, PAL is dependent on volunteer support from community-minded individuals, business leaders, corporations and foundations.
If you are interested in making a contribution to PAL, serving as a PAL volunteer, or would like further information, please email Program Coordinator Jan Harris or call 267-536-1083. Visit the website at www.abingtonpal.org.
Abington Township Police Explorers
The Abington Township Police Department’s Explorer Program provides an opportunity for young men and women to experience first-hand how a police department functions. The program, geared towards kids interested in a future in law enforcement, gives youths self-confidence, discipline, and a feeling of community involvement. They are trained in all aspects of law enforcement, including report writing, traffic stops, crime scene investigation, self defensive tactics, firearm safety, arrest procedures, criminal laws, etc.
Police Explorers perform a variety of community services which is not only personally satisfying but valuable experience which is frequently asked for when applying for college. The Explorers also work with the Community Policing Division and help with special events by assisting with traffic control and support.
If you are interested in becoming a Police Explorer or would like more information please email Explorer Advisor Officer Alison Gontowski at firstname.lastname@example.org. (Police Explorers must be between 14 to 20 years old. If you are under the age of 18 you need parental consent to participate.)
Youth Aid Panel
How does the Youth Aid Panel work?
As an alternative to official court involvement, juveniles who are referred by an Officer and admit their involvement in an eligible offense are offered the opportunity to participate in the Youth Aid Panel program. They and their families meet with trained community volunteer panels to decide an appropriate resolution, holding the juvenile accountable for his/her criminal actions. A contract is signed between the panel and the juvenile tailored to the specifics of the offense. A contract may involve community service, counseling, restitution and other outcomes. Successful completion of the program by the juvenile will result in a contact with an internal disposition.
How to become a Volunteer?
Abington Township depends on its volunteers! Volunteers must be: A United States citizen; at least 18 years of age; lived in or worked in Abington Township for more than 1 year; screened for criminal history and child abuse.
Volunteers may not: be involved in law enforcement; be a school official; seek or presently hold elected or appointed office or have a criminal record. If you are interested in serving on the Youth Aid Panel or for more information please contact our Youth Aid Panel Coordinator Jan Harris or call 267-536-1083.
Abington Community Taskforce – A Community That Cares
The Abington Community Taskforce (ACT) is a coalition of parents and Abington-based educational, religious, social service, recreational, and civic agencies, as well as the Abington Police. Its mission is to create within Abington a responsible, caring, and safe community. ACT also serves as the governing board for Abington’s Communities That Care initiative. Abington Township was the first Township in Pennsylvania to be accepted into the Commonwealth’s Communities That Care program.
Some of ACT’s initiatives include the establishment of programs designed to teach effective parenting skills; the development of peer counseling services; increasing opportunities for safe community activities for young people; and creating programs to increase awareness and respect for diversity within our community.
School Resource Officers
Thanks to the cooperation and commitment of the Abington School District, Abington P.D. has full-time School Resource Officers (SRO’s) assigned to both the Abington Junior and Senior High Schools. Our SRO’s provide a uniformed police presence, and serve as visible, positive role models for the school population. The addition of the SRO complements the Abington Police Department’s commitment to ongoing school-based outreach programs such as D.A.R.E., the Community Partnership of Youth and Adults, and 24 Hour Relay Challenge.
In addition to working with students, faculty, parents, and community groups, SRO’s identify and address risk factors that contribute to criminal behavior or substance abuse among Abington students. In addition, the SRO’s assist in the planning and implementation of school activities by serving as a link to outside community, civic, and governmental resources. In this manner the APD, School District, students, parents, and community will work in partnership to develop an atmosphere of positive, pro-social behavior.
Working primarily in uniform, the SRO provides a visible symbol that the police and schools are mutually committed to providing a safe learning environment. In addition, the SRO will serve as a liaison between the schools and the police department.
Community Partnership of Youth & Adults (CPYA)
The Community Partnership of Youth and Adults (C.P.Y.A.) works to mobilize interested and responsible citizens of all ages through activities that enhance community spirit. Goals of C.P.Y.A. include fostering inter-generational respect; developing community service projects; offering safe activities for youth; raising individual self-esteem; and building a sense of empowerment through participation in community activities and service projects.
C.P.Y.A. is based at the Abington Junior and Senior High Schools, and is under the supervision of Abington P.D.’s School Resource Officers. Over the years the organization has carried out a number of successful activities, including the annual Rock-a-Thon. In this unique fund-raiser, teams of students keep a decorated rocking chair in motion for twelve consecutive hours.
Kids In Safety Seats (K.I.S.S.)
Is your child protected by a safety seat when traveling in a vehicle? Many deaths and injuries suffered by children could be avoided with the correct use of child safety seats and seat belts. Unfortunately, many parents are unaware they are using safety restraints incorrectly, thereby placing their child at risk needlessly. In fact, studies have shown that four out of five car seats are installed or used incorrectly.
The Abington Township Police Department recently established the Kids in Safety Seats (K.I.S.S.) program. The program is designed to ensure that child safety seats and seat belts are used correctly to prevent injury and save lives. The Police Department’s inspection and proper fitting of child safety seats is sponsored by Citizens and Police Together (C.A.P.T.). A $20 donation is requested for the service.
For additional information on child safety seats contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. To schedule an inspection and fitting, contact Jan Harris at email@example.com or call 267-536-1083.
Safety Seat Recalls
Is your child seat truly safe? You may check for current product recalls by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.