New Resource: Supporting Families of Law Enforcement Service Members
Law enforcement families are accustomed to having loved ones work long and sometimes irregular and unpredictable hours. However, when those same loved ones are also members of the National Guard or the reserves, they can be deployed at a moment’s notice. The prospect of a spouse, a mother, or a father being deployed for six to twelve months can be overwhelming. To support families through this difficult time, the IACP has developed a comprehensive guide, Double Duty: A Guidebook for Families of Deployed Law Enforcement Officers, which provides families with best practices and lessons learned to assist them before, during, and after the deployment.
“This guide addresses a range of issues that veterans and families face while being deployed. It serves as a crucial tool for veterans and their families in preparing for deployment,” said Sandra Espada, New York State Police Investigator and Operation Iraqi Freedom veteran. Developed through support from law enforcement spouses who have experienced deployment, this guide provides a road map that families should be thinking of during deployment, resources available to them, and a glossary of important military terms.
Law enforcement leaders will also find information in this guide designed for them to assist the military families in their agencies. Section VI of the guide, “Policy and Practice Recommendations for Law Enforcement Leaders,” provides actions that agencies can take during each stage of an officer’s deployment cycle. The extent of impact this guide will have on members of the military and their families will depend in large part on law enforcement leaders providing this guide to individuals in their agencies. It is critical for agencies to take a proactive role in reaching out and providing support to military families. It is not enough to say “Call me if you need anything;” law enforcement and family partners emphasized to the IACP that although families believe they can manage on their own, they always appreciate consistent contact and being remembered while their loved ones are deployed. This action will ensure greater retention of personnel and will build cohesion in the agency.
The family guidebook is the third in a series of guidebooks supporting veterans in law enforcement, developed by the IACP and the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. This and two previous guides, Combat Veterans and Law Enforcement: A Transition Guide for Veterans Beginning or Continuing Careers in Law Enforcement and Law Enforcement Leader’s Guide on Combat Veterans: A Transition Guide for Veterans Beginning or Continuing Careers in law Enforcement, are available for download at http://www.theiacp.org/vets2cops.
The IACP Publishes Law Enforcement Research Priorities
The IACP Research Center Directorate, in collaboration with the IACP Research Advisory Committee and the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), is proud to release the report Law Enforcement Research Priorities for 2011 and Beyond. The ability to conduct timely and relevant policy research is an enormous challenge for almost all U.S. police agencies. To better assist its members in selecting research topics and methods to accomplish that research, the IACP surveyed member law enforcement executives to determine what type of research they find most useful and to help understand their research priorities. Once the survey was completed and the results were analyzed, a focus group of law enforcement leaders was convened to react to the data and determine a set of 12 action steps to help law enforcement executives either conduct or utilize existing research to improve performance.
The action steps contained in the report focus on three critical areas:
- Facilitation of law enforcement’s use of research findings
- Encouragement of law enforcement’s participation in research
- Enhancement of the utility, quality, and quantity of law enforcement research
The IACP, NIJ, and the participants of the survey and focus group want to ensure that law enforcement leaders have the tools, the information, and the resources that agencies need to make informed, well-researched policy decisions. This goal cannot be accomplished without the full engagement of law enforcement leaders in collaborative research efforts. This document presents critical policing research priorities for 2011 and methods to accomplish that research.
For more information and an electronic copy of this publication, visit http://www.theiacp.org.
The IACP Releases Publication on Excellence in Law Enforcement Research
The IACP, in partnership with Sprint, is proud to release the Excellence in Law Enforcement Research Award publication. Each year, Sprint and the IACP sponsor the competitive Excellence in Law Enforcement Research Award Program to help promote effective research partnerships among law enforcement agencies and university-based criminal justice researchers. This publication highlights innovative research being conducted in law enforcement agencies around the country and contains solutions and strategies that when replicated may help any law enforcement agency be better prepared to face current challenges.
Law enforcement agencies can enhance their performance and capacity by using reliable research to make informed policy decisions. Applications to this award program are made each year from federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies on innovative research programs being conducted. The research that applications present to the IACP is then judged with the following criteria:
- Did the research conducted have a high impact on the agency’s missions and goals?
- Did the research influence and improve performance by both sworn and nonsworn personnel?
- Was the research innovative?
- Did the research involve a strategic partnership between the agency and a local university?
- Did the research have goals that were measurable?
- Did the research effectively address the needs of the community?
- Does the agency have a plan in place for research sustainability?
This publication addresses critical law enforcement policy issues and is available online at http://www.theiacp.org.
Guide Describes Endangered-Missing Advisory Plans
The unauthorized absence of a child from the home is a family crisis that requires immediate and collaborative attention. Over the past two decades, the AMBER Alert Program has grown into a nationally coordinated effort under the Office of Justice Programs, which has significantly improved the strategies and the methods for recovering endangered and abducted children. More than 500 children have been returned home as a result of AMBER Alert plans, which have been established in every state.
Despite such progress, however, gaps remain in the recovery of missing children whose cases do not meet the strict criteria for the AMBER Alert and in the recovery of missing adults, whose cases are not covered by the AMBER Alert. To assist communities in closing these gaps, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention has initiated a project to help states, communities, and law enforcement agencies develop a strategy in which the Endangered Missing Advisory (EMA) plays a crucial role.
This guide provides AMBER Alert coordinators, law enforcement, and public safety professionals with an effective and efficient way to implement an EMA plan. It offers recommendations to assist law enforcement in developing strategies to recover missing children and adults and includes relevant findings to inform policy makers’ efforts to address the problem.
Guide for Implementing or Enhancing an Endangered Missing Advisory (NCJ 232001, 44 pages) describes how a community can establish a task force to create an EMA plan, which forms voluntary partnerships to rapidly recover missing persons who do not fit the AMBER Alert criteria but who may be in danger. To download the publication, visit http://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/ojjdp/232001.pdf.
Government Offers Workplace Security Awareness Course
The Department of Homeland Security is offering IS-906, Workplace Security Awareness, a no-cost training course developed by the Office of Infrastructure Protection Sector-Specific Agency Executive Management Office. Law enforcement executives may wish to mention this course when they meet with private security officials in their communities.
The online training provides guidance to individuals and organizations about how to improve security in the workplace. The course is self-paced and takes approximately one hour to complete. This comprehensive cross-sector training is appropriate for a broad audience regardless of knowledge and skill level. The course promotes workplace security practices applicable across all 18 critical infrastructure sectors. The training uses innovative multimedia scenarios and modules to illustrate potential security threats. Threat scenarios include
- access and security control,
- criminal and suspicious activities,
- workplace violence, and
- cyber threats.
The course also features interactive knowledge reviews, employee tools, and additional resources.
Upon completion of Workplace Security Awareness, employees will be able to
- identify potential risks to workplace security,
- describe measures for improving workplace security, and
- determine the actions to take in response to a security situation.
A certificate is given to participants who complete the entire course and successfully pass the final exam.
Access IS-906 on the Federal Emergency Management Agency Emergency Management Institute website at http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/IS/IS906.asp.
For more information about Office of Infrastructure Protection training courses, e-mail IP_Education@hq.dhs.gov.
For more information on the DHS Office of Infrastructure Protection, visit http://www.dhs.gov/criticalinfrastructure. ■