Archives Erica Richardson

National Police Foundation to Serve As Research Partner to Assess Implementation of the Task Force on 21st Century Policing Recommendations

May 12, 2020—The National Police Foundation (NPF) will serve as the research partner for a new project that will assess implementation of the Task Force recommendations since they were published five years ago this month. The consulting firm 21CP Solutions will lead the overall project. 21CP Solutions brings a diverse, seasoned group of professionals who have transformed agencies from inside and outside, strengthening the health of organizations and community relationships. 21CP Solutions helps departments and organizations provide for public safety and promote community well-being through real-world, strategic approaches.

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National Police Foundation, partners provide PPE to law enforcement agencies in need nationwide

May 11, 2020—The National Police Foundation (NPF), through its Corporate Care Resource Center and through its #GotYouCovered Million Masks Campaign partnership with Axon Enterprise, is committed to providing personal protective equipment (PPE) to agencies across the country that are experiencing shortages during the global COVID-19 pandemic. While some cities have local police foundations that are working hard to assist their first responders, NPF and its partners are striving to ensure that all agencies receive the PPE they need so that officers and their families can feel safe.

Through these combined initiatives, face masks, hand sanitizer, and disposable gloves have been distributed to requesting agencies.

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Confronting COVID-19: Strong Leadership, Honest Assessments, Utilizing Available Resources, Communication, and Education

By Sheriff Rich Stanek
Hennepin County (MN) Sheriff (Ret.)

No level of planning could have fully prepared us for the difficult news coming from our nation’s jails and correctional facilities.  Heightened levels of contagion, and the associated stress and anxiety are impacting our medical, security, and behavioral health staff that work in these facilities as well as those in custody.

What more can we do to address the crisis, reduce the risk, and provide much-needed support? If I were still on the job today, these six steps would be on my to-do list and I hope they’re on yours as well.

 

  1. Acknowledge the problems, risks, and fear. Transparency and communication help us to work through these challenges.  More information can provide a baseline for developing a realistic view of the problems and allow us to transition toward identifying solutions.  Open up and encourage news reports and information sharing to build confidence that important information is being shared on a timely basis, even if the news is difficult to hear.
  2. Walk through your facilities and ask your command staff to do the same. Observe and make an honest assessment about what you are seeing. Be a visible leader, listener, and an observer—your presence will demonstrate your commitment and support for your employees and line staff.  You may find there are problems with a quick or obvious solution, where you may easily prioritize your resources and next steps.
  3. Consider grant funding to meet unanticipated needs. The Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance currently has $850 million available for state and local public safety agencies for COVID-19 related expenses. Sterilizing equipment, supplies, trainings, medical care costs, and developing teleconferencing capabilities all qualify for these funds that are available through May 29, 2020, for use over a two-year period. For more information, click here.
  4. Be clear about what personal protective equipment, supplies and other equipment are or are not available. It’s important to have access masks, gloves, soap, disinfectant, and hand sanitizer. If the items are not available now, explain why and when they will be made available.
  5. Provide education about how to minimize infection (e.g., washing hands properly, avoid touching the face and hard surfaces, and keeping social distancing guidelines). Increase your cleaning budget, bring in additional cleaning staff if possible, provide liberal access to cleaning supplies, and schedule daily or more frequent cleaning protocols.
  6. Consider new strategies for easing the stress and anxiety associated with the virus along with the physical limitations and environment everyone in the facility must accept. This could be done by playing music, relaying positive messages, facilitating and encouraging physical activity, sharing reading materials, and teaching healthy coping skills and strategies. From breathing techniques to music therapy to physical stretching and meditation, there are no-cost ways to manage stress without compromising security. Get innovative with your solutions. For example, can you make more call-times available for inmates through use of discretionary funds or donations?

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National Police Foundation conducts virtual site visits, hosts webinars to continue CALEA Accreditation process for agencies in Mexico 

May 10, 2020—COVID-19 has not prevented the National Police Foundation’s International Team from continuing to provide quality technical assistance as public safety agencies throughout Mexico continue to work toward accreditation through the Commission on Accreditation of Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA).

With funding support from the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, the National Police Foundation is currently providing technical assistance to 75 public safety agencies, including municipal law enforcement agencies, communications centers, and training academies, throughout Mexico in order to help agencies achieve CALEA Accreditation.

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National Police Foundation launches corporate sharing center to supply personal protective equipment to public safety personnel

April 16, 2020—The National Police Foundation (NPF) is pleased to announce it has launched a Law Enforcement and Public Safety Corporate Caring Resource Center. Through this Center, companies can donate personal protective equipment (PPE) and other needed supplies that will be distributed to public safety personnel.

Visa, Inc. is the first major corporation to make a contribution to the Corporate PPE Sharing Center—donating 10,000 pairs of disposable gloves.

Distribution of PPE is being coordinated in partnership with Axon Enterprise, Inc., who recently launched a global campaign with the NPF to provide masks and other PPE to first responders. To date, 8,195 agencies have asked for help through Axon’s COVID-19 Support Center, representing 1,148,819 public safety officers. Axon has received requests from all 50 states and 9 countries. The Corporate PPE Sharing Center will complement this initiative to meet the demands of more agencies.

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COVID-19 is ‘taxing on police chiefs’ but policing profession’s ‘strong mindset’, ‘public cooperation’, and ‘communication’ is going ‘incredibly well’

By Chief John Perez
City of Pasadena (CA) Police Department

As Chief of Police in the City of Pasadena (CA), I, along with all of my other colleagues in law enforcement, am responsible for guiding our police agency in this difficult time, as well as provide public safety services during the COVID-19 pandemic. This national emergency is unlike any other emergency or crisis law enforcement has ever prepared for. As many of us experienced the ’92 civil unrest as well as managed the many challenges of the post 9/11 environment, the lessons learned from those experiences are quickly assisting us in striking the right balance between protecting the safety of our officers, their families, and providing essential public safety services to our community. The inability to ensure we have enough personal protective equipment (PPE) and essential supplies elevates the situation as well as the challenges of leading our workforces in these trying times.

Here is what we have experienced after nearly a month and I hope sharing this provides an understanding that we are in this together.

These are the worries all Police Chiefs and Sheriffs are confronting in our Departments:

  • Managing fears inside of our own Organizations and within the community is first on this list.
  • There is a high degree of public fear as we confront an enemy we cannot see nor hear and the future seems uncertain.
  • The public is fearful of civil unrest, rumors of military deployment, concerns for family members they cannot visit, as well as the real impact to our economy.
  • The news doesn’t make it easier with issues seen in other countries where bodies are placed in the streets for pickup. The level of fear is magnified with global events of how COVID 19 is being managed.
  • There are concerns and fears for police departments not being prepared as our officers want strong communication and leadership as we develop changes to our workforces and field procedures.
  • Our Officers want assurance they are being supported and that efforts are underway to protect them in the field and in our police stations.
  • This creates a feeling of a lack of control, low self-confidence, and concern for emotional well-being for first responders. These emotions derive from the same officer safety issues our profession has always encountered prior to COVID 19, but now includes our contact with everyone in the public and how we respond to calls for service and make arrests.
  • We also finish our longer workdays by cleansing thoroughly before or upon after arriving home with the lingering thought “Am I bringing it home to my family?”

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Axon announces campaign to provide 1 million masks to first responders, partners with National Police Foundation to launch #GotYouCovered crowdfunding initiative

Axon announces campaign to provide 1 million masks to first responders

Partners with National Police Foundation to launch #GotYouCovered crowdfunding initiative

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., April 9, 2020/PRNewswire/ — Axon (Nasdaq: AAXN), the global leader in public safety technologies, today announced that it has committed over $1 million for personal protective equipment (PPE) for first responders, including a partnership with the National Police Foundation and will match up to $500,000 in community donations. 100 percent of funds will go directly towards helping reduce first responder exposure to COVID-19 by purchasing medical masks, gloves and hand sanitizer. Donations may be made to the #GotYouCovered campaign through May 31, 2020: https://charity.gofundme.com/o/en/campaign/got-you-covered.

Axon Announces Campaign to Provide 1 Million Masks to First Responders

“We are extremely proud to be partnering with Axon on this incredibly important initiative to supply PPE to first responders,” says the National Police Foundation President, James Burch. “We are working through an unprecedented time in modern history, but times like these are a good reminder of the positive impact we can have when we work together. We are thankful for Axon’s support and are motivated to help our first responders and communities as much as possible over the coming weeks.”

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What Chiefs Can Do Today About Impending Officer Shortages

By Chief (Ret.) Rick Myers and Joseph A. Schafer (Professor of Criminology & Criminal Justice and Associate Dean of Research in the College for Public Health and Social Justice at Saint Louis University)

In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, many leaders are coping with the impact of officers in their organization being on quarantine, hospitalized, or simply calling in sick. This is occurring against a backdrop in which many agencies are struggling to achieve full staffing. The forecast from many police futurists, however, is that this situation is only going to get worse, independent of the COVID-19 situation. Most agencies have a high proportion of personnel who are retirement-eligible or approaching eligibility. Exacerbating this are the ongoing recruitment struggles that have been well documented. Add to it now the suspension of many police academies and the cessation of recruitment and selection efforts, and the staffing forecast for 2021 and 2022 is challenging. If COVID-19 results in cycles of regional or national workforce disruption, as some medical experts are projecting for the next 18-24 months, police agencies might only be seeing the beginning of their challenges to provide core services and to care for their personnel.

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National Police Foundation launches real-time situational awareness tool for law enforcement to track COVID-19 officer exposures and PPE impacts

MARCH 25, 2020—In response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and its impact on law enforcement and other first responders, the National Police Foundation (NPF), in collaboration with the National Alliance for Public Safety GIS (NAPSG) Foundation and Esri, has developed a real-time COVID-19 situational awareness tool for law enforcement agencies. The tool, featuring a real-time dashboard, provides critical insights for executives, commanders, administrators and other decision-makers to better assess and monitor the impact of COVID-19 on our nation’s first responders, including officer exposures, diagnoses, workforce impacts, and personal protective equipment (PPE) needs and projections.

The interactive tool allows agencies to provide confidential, real-time updates that are instantly incorporated into the national dashboard and map. The dashboard identifies the number of officers exposed, officially tested with a positive diagnosis, placed in off-duty status due to exposure, and that are self-isolating due to symptoms or off-duty exposure. The dashboard also estimates the availability of necessary PPE, the most critical PPE that agencies are lacking, and current and projected shortages of PPE. The data is then aggregated and mapped at the state-level in order to show impacts across the country. Individual agencies will not be identified. Law enforcement agencies can then compare impacts in their state with those of other states.

Screenshot of the National Police Foundation’s COVID-19 Law Enforcement Impact Real-Time Surveillance Dashboard. (Photo by: National Police Foundation)

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Passing of longest-serving, former Police Foundation President Hubert Williams

MARCH 12, 2020—The National Police Foundation extends heartfelt condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Hubert Williams, who passed away earlier this week on Tuesday, March 10, 2020. Williams served as the president of the National Police Foundation (formerly Police Foundation) from 1985-2012—becoming the longest serving president in the organization’s 50-year history.

Williams—a Harvard Law Fellow, Graduate of Rutgers Law School, a founding member and former first President of the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement (NOBLE), and the youngest and first African American to serve as Police Director in Newark, NJ—was a trailblazer and influential leader in the policing profession.

Williams was appointed Police Foundation president in 1985, following the retirement of NYPD Commissioner Patrick V. Murphy. Prior to his appointment as president of the Police Foundation, Williams served as police director in Newark, New Jersey, from 1974 to 1985, and under his leadership the Newark Police Department served as the laboratory for two groundbreaking Police Foundation studies pivotal to the evolution of community policing—The Newark Foot Patrol Experiment and the NIJ-funded reducing fear of crime experiment.

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