The Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc., (CALEA) presented the Lakeland Police Department its Public Safety Communications Accreditation at the CALEA Conference in Albuquerque, NM, on Saturday, November 22, 2014. The Lakeland Police Department has now received dual law enforcement/communications accreditation awards.
The CALEA Public Safety Communications Accreditation Program provides a communications center, or the communications unit of a public safety agency, with a process to systemically review and internally assess its operations and procedures. To obtain this accredited status, the Communications Center must demonstrate compliance with 213 standards.
The standards upon which the Public Safety Communications Accreditation Program is based reflect the current thinking and experience of public safety communications executives and accreditation experts. APCO International (Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials International, Inc.), the leading communications membership association, was a partner in the development of CALEA’s Standards for Public Safety Communications Agencies© and its Accreditation Program. This relationship continues today as APCO recognizes the achievements of CALEA Accredited Public Safety Communications agencies and supports accreditation.
- CALEA Accreditation requires the communications center or unit to develop a comprehensive, well thought out uniform set of written directives. This is one of the most successful methods for reaching administrative and operational goals, while also providing direction to personnel.
- CALEA Accreditation standards provide the necessary reports and analyses a CEO needs to make fact-based, informed management decisions.
- CALEA Accreditation requires a preparedness program be put in place—so a communications center is ready to address natural or man-made unusual occurrences.
- CALEA Accreditation is a means for developing or improving upon a communications center’s relationship with the community or the agencies it services.
- CALEA Accreditation strengthens an agency’s accountability, both within the agency and the community, through a continuum of standards that clearly define authority, performance, and responsibilities.
- Being CALEA Accredited can limit a communications center’s liability and risk exposure because it demonstrates that internationally recognized standards for public safety communications have been met, as verified by a team of independent outside CALEA-trained assessors.
CALEA Accreditation facilitates an agency’s pursuit of professional
The Benefits of having our Public Safety Communications Center accredited are:
- Provides a management model for agency administration and operations;
- Produces better trained public safety personnel;
- Can limit an agency's liability and risk exposure;
- Promotes greater accountability within the communications center.
- Demonstrates verification of excellence.
Communications Manager, Bill LePere says, “Completing the two-year project to gain accredited status as a public safety communications center is challenging, but it validates the department’s procedures, training, and overall performance meet or exceed national standards. We are proud of our Emergency Communications Specialists and the services they provide the community with every phone call answered and call for service dispatched. They are the true first, first responders.
The personnel in the attached photograph from the conference is; left, W. Craig Hartley Jr. , Executive Director of CALEA, Captain Steven Walker, Communications Manager, Bill LePere, Interim Chief Larry Giddens, JoAnne Munroe, Lead Assessor and Grayson Robinson ,President/Chairperson for CALEA.