Law Enforcement Agency and Officer Resilience Training Program

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Law Enforcement Agency and Officer Resilience Training Program

The Law Enforcement Agency and Officer Resilience Training Program is designed to equip officers with empirically validated skills of resilience. The program is offered as a three-day in-person training. 

 

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The Law Enforcement Agency and Officer Resilience Training Program is one of the seven programs currently within the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA)’s Preventing Violence Against Law Enforcement Officers and Ensuring Officer Resilience and Survivability (VALOR) Initiative. Visit the BJA VALOR Initiative Overview Website for more information.

About the Law Enforcement Resilience Training Program

Police work is physically and mentally demanding. To protect the communities they serve, police officers must receive the tools and resources they need to protect their own health and safety. One tool that police agencies can use to support officer health and wellness is resilience training. Resilience is the capacity to prepare for, recover from, and adapt to stress and adversity.

The IACP, in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania (Penn) and the BJA VALOR Initiative, has customized a program designed to help officers and agencies enhance their resilience skills. The program, based on the Penn Resilience Program, equips individuals with skills that can be immediately applied to everyday life.

The training includes a set of empirically validated skills that can strengthen one’s ability to overcome adversity and challenges, manage stress, maintain peak performance, and thrive in their personal and professional life. The skills are divided into three core themes:

  • Mind skills harness thinking to drive productive emotions, reactions, and physiology.
  • Energy skills regulate energy and maintain vitality.
  • Connection skills strengthen professional and personal relationships.

Training Program Overview

The Law Enforcement Agency and Officer Resilience Training Program is a three-day, interactive training with role plays, videos, and discussions. Program attendees include sworn personnel from all ranks as well as dispatchers. Trainings are held regionally and accommodate a select number of attendees per agency.

Focus areas include:

  • Learned Optimism
  • Real-Time Resilience
  • Signature Character Strengths
  • Deliberate Breathing
  • Managing Difficult Conversations

By the end of this course, attendees will have a set of strategies and tools to call upon when managing stress, overcoming challenges, and adapting to adversity.

Train-the-Trainer Program Overview

For agencies who wish to continue the program in-house or regionally with nearby jurisdictions, the IACP offers a train-the-trainer program for agencies to train up their own Agency Trainers. During the train-the-trainer program, Agency Trainers first learn resilience skills for themselves. Upon completion of the program, they are equipped to teach the skills of resilience to their agency in a flexible, scalable model.

The train-the-trainer program has two phases:

  • Phase 1 (three days): Attendees learn resilience skills through an interactive, experiential format.
  • Phase 2 (four days): Attendees learn how to teach the resilience skills to others using a manualized curriculum.

Resources

Law Enforcement Resilience Training Program: Through the Preventing Violence Against Law Enforcement Officers and Ensuring Officer Resilience and Survivability Initiative of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance, the International Association of Chiefs of Police, in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania’s Positive Psychology Center, has developed the Law Enforcement Resilience Training Program. This resource provides an overview of the program. 

Enhancing Officer Wellness and Resiliency in Policing: The stressors that police officers face can have serious implications for overall health and wellness. In times of stress and uncertainty, officers must take practical steps to prioritize their mental and physical wellness. This resource provides examples of resilience practices that can be implemented in the daily lives of officers to improve their wellbeing.

Resilience in Law Enforcement: Thriving in the Face of Adversity: This webinar will identify recommendations for implementing the Law Enforcement Resilience Training Program into agency training schedules and culture, explore the impact of resilience skills on personal and professional lives, and discuss the importance of resilience skills for the law enforcement field.

Perspective Series: The Role of Resilience in Officer Safety and Wellness: A series of brief testimonial videos features participants from the Law Enforcement Resilience Training Program discussing their perspectives on the value of the training, the importance of officer safety and wellness, and specific resilience skills that have made an impact in their own lives and careers.

Practical Resilience Training: Skills to Expand Agency & Officer Wellness: This conference workshop presentation discusses the proven effectiveness of building and strengthening resilience in law enforcement officers and how that can lead to the reduction of stress, a more balanced life, stronger mental health, and safer officers and communities. Hear from an executive perspective on the importance of strengthening resilience within a department, a recent resilience training participant on why bringing the training to their department was essential to expand upon their current officer wellness initiatives, and an agency trainer on their experience building and implementing a resilience program that has trained over 600 department personnel.

Build Your Resilience Skills: Strengthening Relationships in Positive Conversations: This conference workshop presentation features two representatives from the South Dakota Highway Patrol, who participated in the Law Enforcement Resilience Training Program, demonstrating a resilience skill based on positive conversations that viewers can easily incorporate into their lives in order to decrease anxiety and depression and increase optimism and well-being.

Build Your Resilience Skills: Gratitude and Optimism: This conference workshop presentation includes two representatives from the South Dakota Highway Patrol, who participated in the Law Enforcement Resilience Training Program, demonstrating a resilience skill based on gratitude and optimism that viewers can easily incorporate into their lives in order to decrease anxiety and depression and increase optimism and well-being.

Host a Regional Training Course

For information about how your department can host a training, please contact:

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