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Pillar 5 — Training and Education

EPPD safety camp event imageToday’s officers must meet a wide variety of challenges. The skills and knowledge required to effectively deal with these challenges requires a higher level of education as well as extensive and ongoing training in specific disciplines. To build a police force for the 21st century, it's important that agencies place value on both educational achievements and socialization skills when making hiring decisions.

Though today’s law enforcement professionals are highly trained and highly skilled operationally, they must develop specialized knowledge and understanding that enable fair and procedurally just policing. The need for realistic, scenario-based training to better manage interactions and minimize use of force is crucial. Tactical skills are important, but attitude, tolerance and interpersonal skills are equally so. And to be effective in an ever-changing world, training must continue throughout an officer’s career. The goal is not only effective, efficient policing, but also procedural justice and fairness.

Recommendation Description

The Federal Government should support the development of partnerships with training facilities across the country to promote consistent standards for high quality training and establish training innovation hubs.

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Law enforcement agencies should engage community members in the training process.

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Law enforcement agencies should provide leadership training to all personnel throughout their careers.

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The U.S. Department of Justice should develop, in partnership with institutions of higher education, a national postgraduate institute of policing for senior executives with a standardized curriculum preparing them to lead agencies in the 21st century.

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The U.S. Department of Justice should instruct the Federal Bureau of Investigation to modify the curriculum of the National Academy at Quantico to include prominent coverage of the topical areas addressed in this report. In addition, the COPS Office and the Office of Justice Programs should work with law enforcement professional organizations to encourage modification of their curricula in a similar fashion.

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POSTs should make Crisis Intervention Training (CIT) a part of both basic recruit and in-service officer training.

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POSTs should ensure that basic officer training includes lessons to improve social interaction as well as tactical skills.

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POSTs should ensure that basic recruit and in-service officer training include curriculum on the disease of addiction.

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POSTs should ensure both basic recruit and in-service training incorporates content around recognizing and confronting implicit bias and cultural responsiveness.

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POSTs should require both basic recruit and in-service training on policing in a democratic society.

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The Federal Government, as well as state and local agencies, should encourage and incentivize higher education for law enforcement officers.

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The Federal Government should support research into the development of technology that enhances scenario-based training, social interaction skills, and enables the dissemination of interactive distance learning for law enforcement.

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The U.S. Department of Justice should support the development and implementation of improved Field Training Officer programs.

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How the Eden Prairie Police Department Demonstrates Training and Education