The New York City Police Foundation is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization that has funneled more than $120 million into the NYPD. In recent years it's been accused of privately funding the NYPD's more dubious forays into counterterrorism and paying for $30,000 worth of food and fun at the Harvard Club for Commissioner Ray Kelly, not to mention hundreds of thousands more for favorable PR. But when it was created shortly after the Knapp Commission exposed NYPD corruption in 1971, the Foundation's goal was to educate and engage the public on police matters. This pamphlet released by the organization in 1974 is a window into that mission.
Issued under Commissioner Donald Cawley, the youngest person to ever head the department, "100 Hats Of Officer Jones" was distributed at grocery stores, banks, and schools to "improve communications and to foster mutual understanding between the Police Dept. and the New York Community [PDF]" by giving the public a glimpse at the duties and responsibilities of the 30,000 officers then on the beat (today it's around 34,500).
Back in 1973, the year before the pamphlet was released, the department made 232,338 arrests annually—"An arrest every two minutes." In 2012, the NYPD made 138,644 arrests [PDF], which is closer to an arrest every 3.7 minutes or so. The City also saw 1,680 murders in 1973. As of November 10, 2013, there have been 287 murders.
The pamphlet also discusses the newly formed Anti-Crime Squads, which were responsible for some of the first undercover sting operations in the country.
Leaping from nowhere to make thousands of "collars"…new guardians of the public called Anti-Crime Squads. Dressed as hippies, rabbis, old ladies, longshoremen, even doctors…they roam the city's crime-prone areas.
While the uniformed officer must spend the bulk of his time answering calls for service…and the Detective is an after-the-crime investigator…the anti-crime man spends his full energies outwitting the street criminal in his hunting grounds…the streets. (The reason for the disguises: to blend in with the street scenery.)
The Anti-Crime Unit evolved into the Street Crimes Unit, which was disbanded after allegations of abuse culminating in three of its members killing Amadou Diallo. Street Crimes was disbanded, but Anti-Crime lives on.
Today around 48% of all uniformed NYPD officers are non-white. Commissioner Cawley, who was only in his position for a year, believed his greatest accomplishment "was opening the ranks to more female, black and Hispanic officers." (Cawley also raised the age requirement for new officers from 29 to 35. Today it's 21.) As a result, there is some eyebrow-raising language in the pamphlet.
In a new experiment, teams of women police officers patrol in squad cars. They face everything the male officer has to, from "gun runs" to DOA's. At the same time, they add a woman's touch to human problems.
Also included in the packet provided to us by a tipster is a Manhattan Precinct Map from the era.