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POLICING TOURISM FOR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT: CONCEPTS AND PRACTICES [Abstract ID: 1212-10]
This paper argues that introducing tourism police in Ethiopian policing is necessary to ensure safety and security in the tourism industry. Previous studies indicated that establishing well organized tourism police as a central anchor in the realm of the travel and tourism industry is required to keep keenness in the market, where competition has become fierce among tourist destination countries. Therefore, the formation of the specialized body of the National Police in the tourism sector is getting due emphasis in our country to increase tourists’ sense of security and protection. An exploratory qualitative study was employed to investigate the practices of policing in the tourism sector. Key informants were selected by employing a purposive sampling technique. Inclusion criteria were employed to select key informants knowledgeable and proximate to the case under investigation. Data pertinent to the study were gathered through interview and analyzed thematically. The findings indicated that the tourism policing is not independently institutionalized and supported by the policy. On the one hand, the concept of tourism policing is not well realized by the security institutions and the police as well. The main reason to this is lack of attention emanating from a state security apparatus. With this vein, some practical recommendations have been set forth to found the tourism police in charge of rescuing tourists from any form of crimes and malevolence.