The Levels of Development and the Police

When I again presented in Sacramento, California, one of the participants told me that he had attended one of my seminars in Sacramento several years previously and that he uses the Levels of Development in various situations—including those when he assists the local police. I asked Frank to share with attendees how he uses the program after arresting a youth and transporting that young person to the police department.

Frank starts by being proactive. He explains the Levels of Development of the discipline plan, and he then informs the person that it is the person’s choice as to how he/she will be treated upon arrival at the destination. Frank explains that operating on Level A or Level B will prompt the authorities to boss the person—under the premise that the person behaving on these levels only obeys someone who has or uses greater authority. However, if the person chooses one of the higher levels, that person will be treated with respect. As a result, life will be much easier for all concerned.

Frank emphasizes to the person to be aware that the level chosen is the PERSON’S OWN CHOICE and that this choice will have an effect upon how he/she is treated by the police officers at the station.

Frank wrote me:

If it is a student or a subject I place under arrest, I ask if the person is enjoying MY being in control of their situation or whether the person would rather be in control of him/herself. Most of the time the answer is the same: “I don’t like this, and I want to be in control.”

I then explain each level and the consequences of choosing each level.

When the person sees that the behavior is at the bullying level—and then that the authority figure must in turn exercise this level on them—the person realizes that the person really wants to be at the cooperation level.

I get the youth to commit to that verbally and then have the person teach me what cooperation looks like to that person.

I repeat to the person that he/she admitted not liking to be controlled by me or others. The youth again repeats this answer verbally. I ask again if the person is sure that he/she wants to be in control one’s future decisions.

At this point I ask what did the person really want when they broke the rule or procedure. The answers vary to this question. I have heard many intimate things in this portion of the conversation.

Before I leave the youth, I tell everyone  with whom I have had this interaction, “You are in control of your decisions. You are in control of the outcome.”

I ask the person to conform for three weeks or 21 days. Of everyone who has done this, I never see or hear about again.