Critical Issues: Use of Military Equipment

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Critical Issues: Use of Military Equipment

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Issue Overview

For decades, the Department of Defense Excess Property Program (1033 Program) has assisted U.S. law enforcement agencies in acquiring unused and surplus military equipment. Agencies have used this surplus military equipment to save civilian lives, protect law enforcement personnel, and enhance public safety.

Contrary to popular belief, the vast majority of the equipment transferred from federal sources to law enforcement agencies is fairly routine—office furniture, computers, and other technology equipment; personal protective equipment; and basic firearms. Federal agencies do also transfer or fund the purchase of surplus military equipment, tactical vehicles, specialized firearms, and aircraft. The transfer of these items is important to law enforcement and their critical mission in helping to keep citizens safe. This page will serve as a clearinghouse of resources to help guide law enforcement as they are confronted with difficult questions related to the use of military equipment.

Messaging Worksheet

The following messaging worksheet breaks down the topic of use of military equipment, and provides key talking points and facts to assist you in your daily communications about the subject. This worksheet is exclusively available to IACP members.

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