COPS Ethics and Integrity Training

The Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) provides community policing and ethics training to law enforcement agencies and community members through its national network of Regional Community Policing Institutes (RCPI). Over the past six years, these institutes have developed and delivered training in their respective regions of the United States. Several have developed ethics and integrity training curricula. In an effort to meet the need for standardized ethics training throughout the country, the COPS Office has designed the course “Police Officer Ethics: A Self-Assessment.”

An example of the importance placed on ethics training is the national trend to include ethics and integrity training under the category of “perishable skills” equal to firearms training, emergency vehicle operation, (EVOC) and other skills requiring annual updates and/or demonstrated proficiency.

One of the tenets of community oriented policing is organizational transformation or change. 1 “Transformation requires learning. Organizations learn only through individuals who learn. Individual learning does not guarantee organizational learning (or change). But without it, no organizational learning occurs. ‘Learning’ in this context does not mean acquiring more information, but expanding the ability to produce the results we truly want in life. It is lifelong generative learning. And learning organizations are not possible unless they have people at every level who practice it.” To that end, the COPS Office designs training to provide learning opportunities to all levels of law enforcement.

Four modules for Law Enforcement CEOs will be available soon through the RCPI network. These modules include Racial Profiling, Use of Force Issues, Early Warning Systems, and Citizen Complaint Processes. These modules will be delivered utilizing a cadre of “master trainers” made up of law enforcement executives from across the nation.

Key to transforming a law enforcement agency is the full participation, buy-in, and training of the line officer. If these are in place, then learning can occur. The Police Officer Ethics curriculum provides the individual with an ethics framework; skills in ethical decision-making; and an opportunity to apply those skills in scenario-based ethical dilemmas. Through personal introspection, the course guides participants through a process of self-assessment that requires them to take a closer look at his/her personal and professional ethics. The training culminates with the development of a personal and confidential action plan that addresses areas that the participant wishes to change or improve.

The COPS Office is confident that this training will prove to be instructive, challenging, and transforming for the individual learner and consequently for the learning law enforcement organization. You may contact the RCPI closest to you for training schedules and for opportunities to partner with them to further toward the COPS Office vision of institutionalizing community policing and improving relationships with communities across America.

[1] Peter Senge, The Fifth Discipline: The Art & Practice of The Learning Organization (New York: Doubleday/Currency). 1994

To attend the training: Contact the nearest RCPI

For more information about the course:

Training and Technical Assistance Division
Office of Community Oriented Policing Services
U.S. Department of Justice
1100 Vermont Street, NW
Washington, DC 20530
Phone: 202-514-5845
Fax: 202-616-8572
Maria.Rubio@usdoj.gov

To attend the Train the Trainer Course:

Malcolm Adams, Senior Program Specialist
Federal Law Enforcement Training Center
National Center for State & Local Law Enforcement Training
OSL Building 67
Glynco, GA 31524
Phone: 912-267-3343
Fax: 912-267-2894
800-743-5382 ext. 3342
www.fletc.gov/osl/
madams@fletc.treas.gov

For CEO training:

Sandra Webb, Sr. Policy Analyst
Training and Technical Assistance Division
Office of Community Oriented Policing Services
U.S. Department of Justice
1100 Vermont Street, NW
Washington, DC 20530
Phone: 202-514-9465
Fax: 202-616-8572
Sandra.Webb@usdoj.gov

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