IACP Urges Congress to Focus on Terrorism Prevention
Joseph Carter, president of the International Association of Chiefs of Police and chief of the MBTA Transit Police Department in Boston,Massachusetts, testified on January 9, 2007, before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee that the prevention of terrorist attacks must play a central role in the U.S. national homeland security strategy.
“Prevention of terrorist attacks must be the paramount priority in any homeland security strategy,” said Chief Carter. “Unfortunately, the vast majority of federal homeland security efforts have focused on increasing our national capabilities to respond to, and recover from, a terrorist attack. This is not the way to make our homeland and hometowns safer.”
Chief Carter also emphasized the vital role that state, tribal, and local law enforcement plays in homeland security efforts and the need for improved cooperation and information sharing between law enforcement agencies at all levels of government.
Chief Carter concluded his testimony by warning the committee that developing assistance programs that target only urban areas is a fundamentally flawed strategy. “For as larger metropolitan areas become more secure, terrorists will seek out other, less protected targets to attack. As we move forward in developing our national
homeland security strategy, we must remember that we are a nation of communities and that all of our communities are at risk,” stated Carter.
For a copy of President Carter’s statement to the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, please visit the IACP Web site at (www.theiacp.org).
DHS Announces $1.7 Billion Available for Local Homeland Security Programs
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the release on January 5, 2007, of the fiscal year 2007 grant guidance and application kits for five grant programs that will total $1.7 billion in funding for state and local counterterrorism efforts. With the fiscal year 2007 funding, the department will have invested nearly $20 billion in local planning, organization, equipment, training, and exercises.
“This year’s grant process will be more user-friendly,” said Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. “There will be increased interaction with all applicants before we award the grants to ensure effective investment. The funds will be distributed to reduce risk across the United States, not just in a handful of places. But let me be clear that the communities facing the highest risk will receive the majority of the funds.”
The five programs that compose the Homeland Security Grant Program (HSGP) encourage a regional approach to strengthening homeland security. Grant funding priorities include reducing risks of improvised explosive devices and radiological, chemical, and biological weapons. They emphasize interoperable communications, information sharing, and citizen preparedness. HSGP fiscal year 2007 funding totals are as follows:
- Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI): $746.9 million
- State Homeland Security Program (SHSP): $509.3 million
- Law Enforcement Terrorism Prevention Program (LETPP): $363.8 million
- Metropolitan Medical Response System (MMRS): $32.0 million
- Citizen Corps Program (CCP): $14.6 million
The department has refined its grants programs over the past year to increase transparency, provide a more streamlined and interactive application process, and classify certain core programs according to risk. In addition, the six UASI cities facing the highest risk will be allowed for the first time to apply up to 25 percent of their award toward current state and local personnel dedicated exclusively to counterterrorism field operations.
HSGP risk methodology considers a variety of factors, including intelligence assessments, population size and density, economic impacts, and proximity to nationally critical infrastructure such as international borders. More than 100 law enforcement, emergency management, and homeland security experts from federal, state, and urban areas will form peer review panels to assess this year’s grant applications. Upon completion of the review process, DHS expects to announce grant allocations by summer 2007.
IACP Leadership Guide to Protecting Civil Rights
The IACP has released a new publication to help law enforcement agencies throughout the United States enhance their efforts to uphold and protect civil rights. The publication, Protecting Civil Rights: A Leadership Guide for State, Local, and Tribal Law Enforcement, provides a comprehensive overview of the civil rights issues and challenges that today’s law enforcement leaders face and gives specific, everyday recommendations on ways to both protect and promote civil rights.
“Nothing is more damaging to the relationship between a law enforcement agency and the community it serves than the perception that its officers have switched from serving as guardians of civil rights to violators of civil rights,” said Joseph Carter, IACP president and chief of the MBTA Transit Police Department in Boston. “This leadership guide not only provides suggestions that are designed to prevent civil rights violations but also highlights ways in which agencies can work with their communities to build a better partnership. We hope that this book, with its practical guidelines and recommendations, will help all law enforcement leaders recognize the need for visionary leadership in this critical area and allow every agency to strengthen its resolve to be a part of the solution.”
The guide offers recommendations in six areas: early intervention, the civilian complaint process, use of force, racial profiling, personnel management, and data management.
Some of the key recommendations for agencies of all types and sizes are as follows:
- Have a policy prohibiting racial profiling and promoting bias-free policing
- Incorporate the core concepts of early intervention into personnel management practices
- Have a policy for handling civilian and internal complaints against officers or the department
- Recruit, hire, and promote personnel in a manner that ensures that officers throughout the ranks reflect the communities they serve
To read Protecting Civil Rights: A Leadership Guide for State, Local, and Tribal Law Enforcement, visit www.theiacp.org.
IACP Guidebook and Roll-Call Video on Human Trafficking
With funding from the U.S. Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women, the IACP has created a guidebook for law enforcement on the crime of human trafficking that covers the federal law; tools for identification, investigation, and response; and resources for victim assistance. The guidebook, which also has a pocket guide for field reference, is available, in bulk, free of charge to law enforcement agencies. To enhance this training, use the guidebook in conjunction with the IACP roll-call video on human trafficking.
The video was created to help law enforcement identify and investigate this emerging crime, offer direction on how to best assist victims, and provide an overview of federal laws. Available in DVD and VHS formats, the video includes a discussion guide and can be shown in three segments:
- Defining the Crime (9 minutes, 46 seconds)
- Identifying and Responding (10 minutes, 13 seconds)
- Investigating and Interviewing (9 minutes, 23 seconds)
The training package is available on the IACP Web site, www.theiacp.org, and police departments can request copies by completing the request form located on the Web site and faxing the completed form to 703-684-3448. There is no charge for the guidebook or video. For more information, please call Aviva Kurash at the IACP at 800-843-4227, extension 809.
Police Labor-Management Relationships
The U.S. Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) has released a two-volume publication series to help law enforcement executives and police union leaders effectively address labormanagement issues that impact police services. The first publication in the series, Police Labor-Management Relationships: Perspectives and Practical Solutions for Implementing Change, Making Reforms, and Handling Crises for Managers and Union Leaders, provides readers with an overview of issues related to the topic and is intended to help law enforcement managers and union leaders adopt a collaborative approach to organizational changes that reduce crime. The accompanying guidebook, Police Labor-Management Relations: A Guide for Implementing Change, Making Reforms, and Handling Crises for Managers and Union Leaders, offers practical methods and tools that can be relied upon as law enforcement and union officials address critical labor-management issues.
As crime patterns and criminal activity change, law enforcement executives seek timely and more effective methods to address these changes. The responses at their disposal often affect the duties of officers and their working conditions and can lead to disputes between police unions and law enforcement executives. The two publications feature survey results from unions and police management on the current state of labor-management relations and offer a variety of perspectives and practical resources to assist with effectively implementing change.
“Today’s reality is that operational changes, new policies, and many other measures implemented by law enforcement executives to drive down crime are going to affect officers and require the support of police unions,” said COPS Office Director Carl R. Peed. “Traditionally, law enforcement labor-management relations have represented a delicate and less than optimal balance of competing factors. This series is meant to help create more collaborative relations that result in enhanced police services.”
Download the series from the COPS Office Web site at www.cops.usdoj.gov, or order free hard copies from the COPS Office Response Center at 800-421-6770.
151 Officers Killed in 2006
There were 151 law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty nationwide during 2006, with traffic-related deaths jumping dramatically over the prior year and shooting fatalities dropping, according to preliminary figures released by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund and Concerns of Police Survivors, two nonprofit organizations that track officer fatalities.
California had the most fatalities with 17, followed by Virginia with 10, New York and Texas with 9 each, and Florida and Illinois with 8 each.
For the ninth straight year, traffic-related incidents claimed the lives of more officers (73) than shootings (54) or any other cause of death. Of the 73 officers who died in traffic-related incidents, 47 were killed in automobile crashes, 15 were struck by vehicles, 9 died in motorcycle crashes, and 2 died in bicycle crashes. This represented nearly a 16 percent increase over the 63 officers who were killed in traffic-related incidents in 2005.
The number of officers killed in shootings declined by nearly 9 percent from the 59 who were shot to death in 2005. These numbers are consistent with a historical trend that shows the number of officers killed in automobile crashes has jumped by 40 percent over the last three decades, while the number of officers who were shot to death during that period has declined by roughly the same amount.
Other causes of deaths included job-related illnesses (18), aircraft crashes (3), beating (1), stabbing (1) and terrorist attack (1). Five of the officers killed during 2006 were women.
For more information, visit the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund’s Web site at www.nleomf.com, and enter the section on facts and figures.