priorities

"Law Enforcement has changed a lot in the 27 plus years since I started working at the Monterey County Sheriff’s Office. Our changing world demands that we change with it.  With that change comes challenges; rising crime rate, new laws imposed on law enforcement, updating policies relating to transparency, mental health, and deputy recruitment related issues. I am the only choice that has the experience in our County, the commitment to our residents, and the proven leadership qualities that we need to grow with the changing times and address the challenges we face with sustainable action.  I’m running for Monterey County Sheriff because we need a Sheriff who understands our County and all of it’s wonderful intricacies and diverse needs. I am willing and able to rise to the challenge of public safety in the 21st Century. I am ready to lead this Office into the future."

- Joe Moses

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Making Monterey County Safer For Everyone

 

CRIME AND PUBLIC SAFETY

The number of Deputies patrolling our neighborhoods is the lowest I’ve seen in my career.  The current level of about 55 deputies covering all three patrol stations in the County has led to a steep decline in available deputies to patrol our streets, interact with our communities, and build relationships with our residents.  This has led to a disconnect between our line staff and our community.  When we don’t even have enough deputies to respond to calls for service, how can we expect them to have positive interaction with community members and work towards building positive relationships and remain engaged with those that we serve?

In order to increase our number of deputies, we need to do a better job of recruiting and retaining our new generation of deputies by appealing to the next generation of deputies and support staff.  My administration will focus on marketing the Sheriff’s Office through social media and other new communication platforms as a top-notch agency that appeals to new employees by offering competitive compensation packages, opportunities for career growth and advancement, and providing an atmosphere where each individual contributes to the overall mission of the Sheriff’s Office.  A priority of hiring local residents into our ranks will provide a more stable workforce with a built-in commitment to Monterey County and our diverse communities.  Why not hire someone in their late 20’s or early 30’s with a background in marketing that knows what it takes to get potential applicants into the hiring process? As Sheriff, I would advocate for our staff and maintain an atmosphere of high morale where everyone is included in supporting the mission of the Sheriff’s Office.

SCHOOL SAFETY FIRST

School safety has become a very real concern for our County and our Country as a whole.  Our children need to be and feel safe in their schools; not just for their wellbeing, but also to promote a learning environment.

As one of the first coordinators for the County-wide active shooter protocol for schools, Joe has worked with Monterey County Office of Education, our local law enforcement, fire, and emergency medical services to formulate a comprehensive training and response plan that has been adopted by all of the stakeholders throughout our County.

Joe is also an advocate for the School Resource Officer program.  When the Carmel Unified School District suspended the program, he worked with school administrators to bring back the School Resource Officer.  These positions not only help to create a safe atmosphere to the schools, but also help to build relationships between the Sheriff’s Office and our youth.  The students learn about the person behind the badge and learn to respect law enforcement while realizing that the deputies aren’t just there to catch them doing bad things.

Joe’s plan to increase school safety includes a commitment to staffing the School Resource Officer positions anytime that school is in session so that you will have the peace of mind that a uniformed deputy is available at or near each school site in the County areas.

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Creating the Path for Stopping the Cycle of Incarceration

RESTORATIVE JUSTICE

Too often, offenders get “stuck” in the revolving door of incarceration and the court system.  While I believe that if you choose to commit crime, you need to be held accountable; I also believe that we cannot expect someone who only knows that type of lifestyle to change their ways without giving them the tools and the hope to lead a more productive life outside this cycle.

Joe will focus on holding those that choose to commit crimes accountable for their actions while also providing them opportunities to be successful once they have fulfilled their debt.  Having managed Jail Operations, Joe understands the benefits of providing those that are incarcerated with the classes, counseling, and life skills they will need to be successful and stop the cycle of incarceration.  Joe will include a mentoring program for this at-risk population to show them that there is another path and how to stay on the right track.

MENTAL HEALTH  AND SUBSTANCE ABUSE

Homelessness and substance abuse has reached crisis levels in our County.  Many of those experiencing homelessness and/or substance abuse disorders suffer from mental health issues. Law Enforcement is often called to address issues related to homelessness and substance abuse; which puts a huge drain on our Sheriff’s Office resources and hinders our ability to respond to other calls for service in the community.   Having worked in the Jail, I have seen all kinds of individuals come through the system.  One of the biggest issues that caught my attention is the number of individuals that come into custody with obvious mental health issues.  Our jails have become de facto mental health institutions. This is wrong.  Although we try to offer the mental health services this population desperately needs, jail just isn’t a therapeutic environment.  As an administrator, I am always looking for opportunities to find workable solutions to these issues.  Here are a couple examples:

  • Establishing a Jail-Based Competency Treatment Program, (JBCT).  Prior to the establishment of the JBCT Program, individuals that came into custody with severe mental health issues would go before the judge and the judge could rule that the individual was not competent to stand trial for the crimes they were accused of.  The judge would order that the individual undergo treatment at a State hospital until they are deemed competent.  They would then be returned to the court to continue with the criminal trial.  Because of the long waiting lines throughout California for space at the State hospital, these people would remain in our County Jail for up to a year without getting the intensive treatment they needed. I learned that the Department of State Hospitals had introduced a program to bring the JBCT program to County Jails and we took advantage of the opportunity.  Today, those that are declared incompetent are able to get into our program in a matter of weeks.  I have seen individuals that have come into custody unable to carry on a normal conversation and after a few days in the program, with the right medications and therapy, are able to fully participate in the program with their fellow participants.

  • Another example is the establishment of a Medication Assisted Treatment Program.  Substance abuse is the root of many of the crimes committed in Monterey County.  If we are able to help those that are in our custody overcome their substance abuse disorders, we will have a direct impact on the crime rate.  There have been many new techniques and evidenced-based programs that can turn the cycle of addiction.  One of those new programs that has had success in other jurisdictions is Medication Assisted Treatment, (MAT). This program uses a combination of intensive psychological therapy and medications to help people overcome their addictions.  I have collaborated with County Behavioral Health and several community-based organizations to bring a MAT program to the jail.  Offering the program to those with substance abuse disorders while they are incarcerated creates the opportunity for those individuals to successfully overcome their addictions while they are in a controlled setting.  The other part of that link is to provide a handoff to a community based program through discharge planning and other tools.  When an individual is getting ready to be released, the Sheriff’s Office works with the selected community program to make sure there is a smooth transition; even going so far as to give the individual a ride to the location.  That way, the individual is not tempted to return to their old lifestyle prior to getting to the program destination.

Joe will take meaningful action to address the homelessness and substance abuse crisis by developing a Behavioral Health Treatment Center, providing cutting-edge training in critical incident response, and providing de-escalation techniques to provide appropriate response and a safe environment for our residents that are suffering from a mental health crisis.  By focusing on mental health, which is often the  basis of homelessness and substance abuse, we will provide our deputies the tools they need to successfully address individuals in crisis and empower those deputies to make a difference in our community.

Focusing on Community Relationship & Customer Service

Joe understands that the Sheriff's Office is a lot more than just the deputies you see on patrol.  He will balance the ever increasing needs of the patrol division with the other aspects of the Sheriff’s Office such as the County Jail, the Civil Division, and the Coroner’s Division.  With his comprehensive understanding of our County and the Sheriff’s Office, he will continue to place an emphasis on customer service for you. This will allow the Sheriff's office to expand its role as a partner with the community working towards making our County a safer and more fulfilling place to live, work, and visit.

Joe understands what it means to be transparent.  When he was a representative for the Sheriff’s Office on the County-wide first responder radio system, (Next Generation Emergency Network); Joe was an advocate for keeping the primary radio channels unencrypted so that the general public could have access to the radio calls for service.  He proposed a plan that also allowed the first responders to switch to an encrypted channel when the situation warranted a tactical response.  New laws in California are ensuring that law enforcement agencies are sharing information with the public we serve.  Instead of fighting these mandates, Joe will work collaboratively with our Board of Supervisors, the media, and our communities to make sure the business of the Sheriff’s Office is open and we are ready to accept the feedback of our constituents.

Preparing Our County for Natural Disaster and Keeping You Safe & Informed

Joe will be sure the Sheriff’s Office and our County is prepared to respond when disaster strikes.  Joe helped modernize the Search & Rescue Team and is often called into service when disaster occurs. He is an expert in coordinating responses to natural and man-made emergencies, bringing together Fire personnel, community-based organizations, and State and Federal Offices to work together towards the common goal of keeping our communities prepared, safe, and resilient.