Today's youth, particularly youth of color and those living in urban areas, encounter law enforcement officers wherever they go. Officers patrol their streets, roam their school hallways, supervise their dances and athletic events, and guard many of the buildings they regularly enter. A police station often abuts their schools, parks, and recreation facilities. Law enforcement officers are the gatekeepers for the justice system. They determine who is arrested, who is not, and who enters into the juvenile justice system. These decisions dramatically and permanently alter a youth's educational and professional opportunities and can have a profound effect on the child's overall wellbeing and health. Clear standards, in combination with rigorous training, would promote a culture in which evaluation and promotion decisions are based upon officers' ability to successfully keep encounters with youth peaceful and positive, rather than on their arrest rates. State implementation of these standards also would improve overall public safety by providing officers with vital tools to de-escalate encounters with young people.