Safety and Security

Outcome Statement

Fairfax County is a place where all people feel safe at home, school, work and in the community.




About the Sections

Each priority area includes the following:

  • Outcome Statement: The aspirational future state for Fairfax County.
  • Introduction/Summary: Context about the priority area.
  • Challenge Questions: Describe the problem/opportunity people are experiencing informed by evidence, data, subject expertise, outside perspectives and realities.
  • Indicators: Ways to measure progress, both for the community at large and for county government. They are clear, quantifiable and they help manage progress.
  • Metrics: Specific data points to track whether Fairfax County is making progress.
  • Strategies: Actions that need to be taken to address identified challenges that “move the needle” on indicators and metrics.


To meet the diverse needs of all our residents, the county must ensure a comprehensive, equitable, and inclusive approach to public safety and justice. Creating a safe community is not only about reducing and preventing injury and crime, it is about building strong, cohesive, equitable, vibrant and engaged communities where all people are free to live to their full potential.

Residents and visitors want a community where people can go about their daily activities in an environment without fear, risk of harm or injury. The responsibility to ensure a safe and secure place for all to thrive is shared across county departments and must include the full participation of the entire community.

The strategies included in this priority area aim to promote fair policing and prosecution practices, strengthen the relationship between public safety and our most vulnerable community members, reduce reliance on use of force and incarceration, strengthen prevention and preparedness programs (especially in light of COVID-19) and enhance transparency and infrastructure.

Challenge Questions

1. How do we adapt public safety services to meet the challenges associated with technology, urbanization and a growing diverse population?

2. How do we ensure that criminal justice is administered in ways that are consistent with the goal of racial and social equity?

3. How do we cultivate relationships with communities to ensure a proactive and integrated approach toward disaster and emergency preparedness, response, recovery and mitigation efforts?

4. Given potential threats related to cyber security and other security risks, how do we reduce the vulnerabilities of our mission-critical infrastructure and ensure that they will be resilient?

5. Considering the dramatic rise in information outlets, how do we align the public’s perception of community safety and security with more objective data and information?


1. Adherence to Laws and Regulations

2. Timeliness and Quality of Emergency Response

3. Effectiveness and Equity of Administration of Justice

4. Safety-Related Prevention and Preparedness

5. Reliability and Security of Critical Infrastructure


Indicator: Adherence to Laws and Regulations


• % of Fairfax County residents, workers and visitors who feel safe in their community

• # of violent crimes per 1,000 residents. (homicide, sex offenses, robbery and aggravated assault)

• # of bias crimes and incidents per 1,000 residents

• # of drug and narcotic incidents per 1,000 residents

• # of property crimes per 1,000 residents (burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft, arson, destruction)

• % of code compliance violations that are resolved/corrected by property owner within 30 days

• % of county employees that pass internal information technology phishing tests


Indicator: Timeliness and Quality of Emergency Response


• % of recipients of emergency services who feel the response to their emergency was delivered timely and effectively

• % of emergency calls for service that are responded to within industry or county standards/benchmarks

• % of use of force incidents that are deemed “in compliance”

• % of public safety calls for service that result in arrest vs. no arrest

• % of public safety personnel who feel they have the proper training and equipment to effectively perform their job

• % of first inspections conducted within five business days after code compliance complaint is received

• % of residents who believe Fairfax County police officers to be fair and just

• # of total days spent in foster care by Fairfax County children ages 0-18


Indicator: Effectiveness and Equity of Administration of Justice


• % of released offenders from jail who do not reoffend within three years

• Variance of enforcement efforts, arrests, prosecution, convictions and sentencing rates among different demographic populations

• % of cases diverted from formal court process to alternative criminal justice programs

• % of people (victims, accused and witnesses) who feel they were treated fairly during enforcement and judicial processes


Indicator: Safety-Related Prevention and Preparedness


• % of Fairfax County Government employees who have completed emergency management training (mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery)

• % of residents who subscribe to Fairfax County Government’s emergency notifications

• % of residents who report they are prepared for 72 hours after an emergency


Indicator: Reliability and Security of Critical Infrastructure


• % of critical infrastructure assets with positive performance ratings

• # of county facilities that meet minimum security standards

• # of legacy information technology systems identified to be retired/replaced with more secure and modern alternatives

• % of residents who experience disruption in critical infrastructure after an event


Provide Timely and Quality Services

  • SS 1. Ensure public safety agencies have the training, equipment and resources needed to deliver timely and effective services, and develop ways to measure and report on the quality of those services.
  • SS 2. Strengthen community relations and trust through outreach, community engagement, partnerships, and active recruiting and hiring of qualified personnel who reflect the communities they serve.
  • SS 3. Strengthen the partnership between Fairfax County schools and law enforcement in ways that focus on creating positive interactions and trust between students, families, staff and police; promote a safe learning environment from elementary grades through high school and provide readily available resources in the event of an emergency.
  • SS 4. Provide timely, quality protective services to mitigate the risk of harm and ensure the safety of children and vulnerable adults.


Improve Adherence to Rules and Regulations

  • SS 5. Bolster programs and resources that reduce recidivism and support successful offender re-entry programs into the community.
  • SS 6. Partner with community and business organizations to strengthen code compliance education of property owners in order to increase their voluntary compliance and accurate reporting.
  • SS 7. Implement proactive outreach programs in areas of the county identified as having the highest volume of calls and code violations.


Improve Community Resilience Through Better Prevention, Preparedness and Recovery

  • SS 8. Develop and implement risk-reduction programs to prevent or mitigate the loss of life, property and resources associated with emergencies and other disasters within a community.
  • SS 9. Strengthen individual, family, employee, school and community capability to facilitate effective emergency preparedness, mitigation, response and recovery.
  • SS 10. Leverage state, business, volunteer and community partnerships to enhance preparedness, response and recovery to disasters.
  • SS 11. Enhance continuity of operations planning and training to ensure capability and continuity of essential government services in the event of an emergency.
  • SS 12 . Ensure coordinated post-incident human services and recovery assistance including case management, emergency housing, behavioral health and family reunification.
  • SS 13. Develop and implement a comprehensive action plan to strengthen physical security, associated security policies, and the training and education of staff to ensure county facilities and parks are safe for employees and visitors.


Ensure Equitable Administration of Justice

  • SS 14. Work collaboratively to increase access to services and identify alternatives to adjudication and incarceration (e.g., diversion programs, specialty dockets) while protecting victims’ and witnesses’ rights.
  • SS 15. Develop and implement recommendations to ensure that all community members are treated fairly and equitably in the enforcement of laws and their experiences with the adult and juvenile justice systems, whether they are defendants, victims of crime, or witnesses.


Strengthen Resiliency of Critical Infrastructure

  • SS 16. Conduct a comprehensive risk analysis of critical infrastructure and systems in the county and develop an action plan for the purpose of enhancing protection and resiliency.
  • SS 17. Proactively test and assess the county’s information technology systems to identify weaknesses and reduce the risks associated with cyber attacks.

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Fairfax Virtual Assistant