By Chief Joseph M. Polisar, Garden Grove, California
In recent months, this column has provided updates on the IACP's efforts in support of the National Criminal Intelligence Sharing Plan and the elimination of radio interference for public safety officials, our actions in response to concerns over the effectiveness of soft body armor, our legislative efforts, and our work on the IACP Center for Police Leadership.
|Chief Joseph M. Polisar, Garden Grove, California|
But these activities represent only a few of the services that the IACP makes available to its members. The range of projects and activities that the IACP-through its divisions, sections, committees, and staff-is involved in has always amazed me. In fact, even though our programs are well advertised through the Police Chief, the IACP Web site, various newsletters, and the annual IACP conference, I often meet members who are surprised by the services the association offers.
It is clear that through these activities the IACP continues to fulfill its mission to advance professional police services and to serve as a leadership organization for law enforcement executives throughout the world.
Unfortunately, listing all of the services provided by the IACP in this column is simply not possible. However, I want to give you just a brief overview of some of the many projects currently under way at the IACP.
Services, Support, and Technical Assistance to Smaller Police Agencies
This program gives departments serving fewer than 25,000 residents with fewer than 25 officers a wide range of services, including regional symposia, on-site training forums, a specialized training track at IACP's annual conference, tribal police training, best practices guides, and a quarterly newsletter, "Big Ideas for Smaller Police Departments." Training subjects include recruitment and retention, new technology acquisition, grant writing, strategic planning, and team-based management.
National Law Enforcement Policy Center
In 1987 the IACP, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Justice, established a National Law Enforcement Policy Center. For the past 17 years, the center has worked with a broad-based law enforcement advisory board to develop more than 98 model law enforcement policies. Each model policy reflects the latest research, the input of leading subject matter experts, and the judgment of advisory board members who have combined this information with their extensive practical field and management experience. The topics addressed by the center represent the most difficult issues facing police administrators.
The IACP Technology Clearinghouse provides guidance to law enforcement agencies interested in installing various technologies and promotes emerging law enforcement technologies. The clearinghouse also provides a comprehensive list of mobile computing and IT resources. The clearinghouse Web site at www.iacptechnology.org also includes information on grant opportunities, technology standards, guidelines published by the IACP Law Enforcement Information Management Section, and technology product surveys.
Cutting Edge of Technology
Designed to enhance law enforcement's understanding, acquisition, and use of technology, this project enabled the development of a Web-based police pursuit database. Facts gathered from the database formed the basis of an executive brief in 2003 that helps departments evaluate their policies, guidelines, and training requirements for pursuits. In 2004 the project will be working with vendors and researchers to develop comprehensive in-car camera standards and testing specifications and examining the use of electro-muscular disruption devices and their impact on tactical police operations.
New Police Chief Mentoring
This project provides newer police executives with guidance as they begin their tenure. The project serves agencies of 25 or fewer sworn officers or those serving populations of 25,000 or less. Newer chiefs gain access to seasoned chiefs from agencies of similar size to learn how they achieved success and resolved similar problems. This assistance includes written materials, guidance, and on-site visits when needed. A major component of the project is A Police Chief's Desk Reference, which includes sections on leadership, policy, funding, accreditation, and other topics.
Police Response to Violence Against Women
The IACP is working closely with the Violence Against Women Office on a continuing program to provide information, technical assistance, and support to police agencies, advocacy organizations, and other agents of the criminal justice system. Activities include regional workshops to train police agency trainers on interstate enforcement of orders of protection and on-site visits to discuss police officer domestic violence. Other initiatives focus on violence against women on campus, safety planning and risk assessments with victims, and domestic violence fatality reviews.
Details on the Web
These programs and activities represent only a small fraction of the valuable information available from the IACP. I urge you to explore the IACP Web site at www.theiacp.org to gain a further understanding of the hundreds of research products, professional services, and training opportunities offered by the IACP. ■