The Police Chief Update
May Issue  
Officer safety and wellness is a top priority for the IACP. A complex topic, officer safety and wellness encompasses everything from tactical safety to safety on social media to stress management, to name a few challenges faced by officers and leaders today. The projects and recommendations within this month’s issue can help law enforcement protect its officers while also protecting the communities those officers are sworn to serve.


There are two inexpensive and common pieces of equipment that have been proven to save the lives of law enforcement officers—seat belts and traffic safety vests. Unfortunately, many officers are resistant to their use under the mistaken belief that they interfere with good tactics. Every year, there are preventable officer fatalities from vehicle-involved incidents—lives that may have been saved if a seat belt or safety vest had been used. Their use is common sense; however, leaders need dedicate time and training to reinforce their use and help officers understand the importance of traffic safety gear.

While many initiatives and programs have had a positive impact on officer safety and wellness, a gap still exists in protecting officers from the dangers they may face in the digital world. These threats, many of which stem from social media use, come from many directions, both external and internal, and they can lead to physical risks, including dangerous situations for officers and their families, and professional risks, such as job loss. Agencies can provide training and sound policies to help keep officers safe from the real dangers of social media.

Life offers few opportunities equal to serving as a law enforcement officer. However, there is a tremendous cost to this choice, and the cost is stress. Among the many distinctive stressors associated with police work, exposure to traumatic experiences may be what most differentiates police officers from other occupational groups. Officers experience violence, human suffering, and other traumatic events in far greater proportions than the general public, and they must manage the physical and psychological consequences throughout their careers. These experiences affect even the most resilient officers and put them at increased risk for developing a variety of mental health problems, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other trauma-related conditions.


Creating and Promoting a Culture of Officer Safety and Wellness

Graham v. Conner: Is Objective Reasonableness Good Enough?

Cost of Ownership of Body-Worn Video

Access the Latest Tools in This Month’s Police Chief Magazine

NICE Investigate
NICE Investigate  
Join former Philadelphia police commissioner Charles Ramsey as he discusses the key challenges facing police investigation units in today’s digital world. You’ll also learn how NICE Investigate can help you automate the collection, analysis and sharing of case evidence. See how it puts evidence into context based on time, sequence and location to help you understand the ‘who, what, when, where and why’—to help you close more cases faster. Register to Attend the Webinar on May 18th at 1pm ET.

Discover Policing Career Center is the official job board of the IACP and a nationwide police recruitment resource. Visit for more information.

City of Statesboro, Georgia

City of Memphis, Tennessee

Georgia World Congress Center Authority – Department of Public Safety

The Dispatch is an opportunity for members and other readers to share their wisdom, thoughts, and input on policing and the magazine. Share your opinion today by taking our poll:

What traffic safety issue do you see as most pressing in your community?


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