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Join the “Stand With Honor” Program

stand with honorThe National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund has just launched a new program in support of the National Law Enforcement Museum called “Stand With Honor.” This is a lifetime membership program being offered to active and retired law enforcement officers.  Some of the benefits include free admission to the Museum for life, special VIP treatment when you visit the Museum and, most importantly, a chance to have your law enforcement story told in the Museum (e.g., where you served, when you served, and memorable moments in your career to be captured and shared at the Museum forever!). 

The cost to join is $300—either in a one-time payment, or in 12 monthly payments. If you are interested in learning more or would like to join the program, please visit www.StandWithHonor.us.

Fraud Alert: Calls Soliciting Donations for the “Police Foundation”

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The Police Foundation, a national, Washington, D.C.-based non-profit organization dedicated to advancing policing through science and innovation, has received information from several individuals who have been contacted by solicitors asking for donations in support of the “Police Foundation.”

The Police Foundation does NOT solicit donations from anyone via phone. If you have been contacted via telephone and asked to make donations to the national Police Foundation in Washington, D.C., this is a scam.

Please note that many legitimate local (and unaffiliated) police foundations and organizations DO solicit donations from local communities and may do so via telephone. If you receive such a call, we encourage you to take note of who is calling (by name and number), the date and time. We also encourage you to require donation information to be sent to you via U.S. Mail before considering any donation.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) maintains an online reporting system for telemarketing and other scams, which can be found at https://www.ftc.gov/faq/consumer-protection/submit-consumer-complaint-ftc and many State Attorneys General offer assistance in reporting and responding to fraud.

The Police Foundation will closely monitor the information and complaints it receives and will share information with authorities as appropriate.

Community Evacuation: What Works and What Hurts

Sheriff-Mike-WilliamsBy Sheriff Mike Williams
Jacksonville (FL) Sheriff’s Office

When a storm like the recent Hurricane Matthew is headed our way, we need to persuade residents to evacuate, which can be a challenge.

If you’ve lived in Florida any amount of time, you become your own hurricane expert. You’re always going to have people who think, “It didn’t happen last time, so we’re not going to abide by an evacuation order.”

In terms of a catastrophic storm, like an Andrew Category 4 or 5, I think you would have more cooperation from people.

I have been through these storms — named storms where we activate — maybe two or three a year for about 10 years, and I, just like they do, remember so many times a big storm didn’t materialize.

This was one of those that was potentially borderline. The issue with these storms is that they’re all different. Weather is dynamic. Not every Category 2 is the same. This had potential for storm surge. We were going to have more water than in the past and that can cause big issues for everybody and be life threatening. Read more

A Little Whimsy Helps the Warn-and-Scold

Tony Zerwas picBy Officer Tony Zerwas

“Don’t speed.”

“Wear your seatbelt.”

“Don’t drink and drive.”

Have you heard this before? Traditional messages similar to these are posted on law enforcement social media pages on a daily basis throughout the country. The messages are well intended, but have been repeated so much that they often fall on deaf ears. As law enforcement agencies, we must find a way to adapt and share these messages in a more effective manner. How do you accomplish this? Easier said than done, right?

Wrong.

It’s really simple.

Read more

Input Needed! Nominate Innovative Programs Responding to Addiction

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Our organization, in collaboration with the Addiction Policy Forum, is excited to launch a new project featuring innovative programs to address addiction in the fields of prevention, treatment, recovery support, overdose reversal, criminal justice reform and law enforcement strategies.

Last month, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released the 2015 drug overdose death data, which showed a significant increase from 47,055 drug overdose deaths in 2014 to 52,404 – an average of 144 drug overdose deaths each day.

However, many states and communities all over the country have created innovative programs to address substance use disorders in their area and we believe they deserve recognition for their hard work in the face of a national epidemic. Innovations in addressing the disease of addiction will help change the way our country views addiction, and featuring these great programs move this forward.

We would like to invite you to nominate programs your organization believes are innovative in these fields. All nominated programs will be reviewed and considered by the Addiction Policy Forum’s National Advisory Board. Selected programs will receive the following:

  • National recognition as an innovation, including announcement to the media and key policymakers;
  • A feature article published on the Addiction Policy Forum website and delivered to over 200 partner organizations
  • A seal of recognition to include on their website and organizational websites; and,
  • Inclusion in a compilation of innovative programs to be published by the Addiction Policy Forum

If you or your organization is interested in nominating a program, please complete the nomination form available here:  Nominate a Program.

Submissions will be reviewed on a rolling basis until March 31st, 2017.

New Release: The Importance of Shop with a Cop

PF On Policing logo final versionAs we enjoy the holiday season and spend time with friends and family, one police department is taking the opportunity to make a special impact on its community. In our newest essay, Beaumont (CA) Police Chief Sean Thuilliez explains how his department’s annual Shop with a Cop event is a great way to not only connect and build relationships with the community, but to also provide for children who may otherwise not receive any gifts for Christmas. To read the full essay, click here. And if you missed the recent essays on pre-arrest diversion programs and deadly force encounters, be sure to visit www.onpolicing.org.

If you would like to receive updates when new On Policing essays are posted, please click here to subscribe and indicate that you would like to receive information about the On Policing essay series.

The Importance of Shop with a Cop

seanthuilliezBy Chief Sean Thuilliez
Beaumont (Ca.) Police Department

My family and I had just driven 9-year-old Indicta from our police station to the local Walmart for our annual Shop with a Cop.

We climbed out of my unmarked vehicle, preparing to join with the other 39 cop-and-child combos to go and find perfect holiday gifts for all of the kids, who come from low-income families. But Indicta’s mother approached us first and raised some concerns.

She explained that Indicta’s father, before leaving for a self-described 30-day camping trip that he never returned from, told Indicta to always behave while he was gone or “the men in blue” would come to take her away. The comment apparently had a powerful impact on the child, and a negative one at that.

The mother then said she was concerned that Indicta would not get a true understanding of police officers because my family was accompanying me. She also did not understand why we were in an unmarked car and not a cruiser with lights and sirens.

At first, her concerns caught me by surprise. But I listened to her, making sure I understood the issues, and then first explained that we were in an unmarked car because it’s my assigned vehicle.

And then I tackled what for me was the more important issue – why my family (my wife, daughter age 20 and son who is 11) had come along. Read more

Deadly Force Encounters and Difficult Conversations

Tim Hegarty photo 2By Capt. Tim Hegarty
Riley County (KS) Police Department

With each new police deadly force encounter, regardless of the circumstances, the opposing sides are becoming more polarized, as if some critical mass is building in the space between.

One of the primary forces behind this mass is the concept of blame.

Stone, Patton and Heen explain in their book “Difficult Conversations” that blame accomplishes three things. First, it assigns the responsibility for the problem to one person or group. Second, it judges the actions of that one person or group to be wrong. Third, as the person or group who caused the problem was wrong, blame calls for that person or group to be punished.

The authors note that blame directs the focus backward, on the past, and consequently an emphasis on blame will never create a path forward to a solution.

Moving away from blame first requires that we acknowledge both sides have been engaged in its practice. Read more

Pre-Arrest Diversion Programs: The Future of Policing

bob-gualtieri-02By Sheriff Bob Gualtieri
Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, Florida

People make mistakes. They do stupid things. Sometimes they make bad choices because they are down on their luck and don’t feel they have another option.

But it is important to realize there is a big difference between bad people who do bad things that hurt people and good people who make an error in judgment because they are young and immature or just find themselves in a bad spot.

Here in Pinellas County, Florida, time and again we see people making these mistakes, getting convicted, serving time or paying large fines and ultimately, leaving themselves with criminal records that will often haunt them for much or all of their lives. Given how information today is so readily available, that statement really is true. There are even websites now where anyone can locate a person’s mugshot for what in some cases is really just a petty offense.

After a lot of talking and planning, we have decided that in our county, just because people do something wrong doesn’t mean they all should be saddled with an undue weight for the remainder of their days. In October, we started an Adult Pre-Arrest Diversion program aimed at preventing these sorts of errors from keeping people from getting a job or stable housing. Read more

New Essay: It’s Not Weak to Feel Psychological Trauma – It’s Human

PF On Policing logo final thumbnailOn the one-year anniversary of the San Bernardino terrorist attack, clinical psychologist Tammy McCoy-Arballo discusses the myriad of emotions and thoughts officers can experience in the aftermath of such an incident. She stresses that “those who develop post-incident reactions are not weak – they are human.” To read the full essay, click here or visit www.onpolicing.org.

If you would like to receive updates when new On Policing essays are posted, please click here to subscribe and indicate that you would like to receive information about the On Policing essay series.

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