Police department pivotal to MU’s top priority of safety
Dec. 05, 2012
Christian Basi, BasiC@missouri.edu, 573-882-4430
By Jerett Rion
COLUMBIA, Mo. – The Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies Inc. (CALEA) has awarded the University of Missouri Police Department the “Accreditation with Excellence Award.” This is the fifth time that the department has received accreditation by CALEA and the first time the department has been awarded the Accreditation with Excellence Award.
“We are extremely proud of the work that our police department does to keep our campus safe,” MU Chancellor Brady Deaton said. “This recognition acknowledges the fact that our police officers are among the best in the nation at their jobs. Chief Jack Watring and his officers demonstrate their concern for our safety every day. We’re very proud of their accomplishment.”
CALEA, which was created in 1979, aims to improve the delivery of public safety services primarily by: maintaining a body of standards developed by public safety practitioners; covering a wide range of up-to-date public safety initiatives establishing and administering an accreditation process; and recognizing professional excellence. The accreditation process consists of a self-assessment, an on-site assessment conducted by CALEA commissioners and a review by a commission review committee, which includes 21 CALEA commissioners.
“Not only have we complied with the standards required by CALEA, we also complied to those standards with excellence,” said Jack Watring, chief of the MU Police Department. “Our department has been accredited with CALEA since 2001; to be honored with excellence makes our officers proud of their work.”
The Accreditation with Excellence Award was created by CALEA in 2011. The purpose of the award is to provide agencies an opportunity to be further recognized for the effective use of accreditation as a model for enhanced public safety service delivery. Some of the criteria for the award include: demonstrated excellence in addressing the intent of CALEA standards beyond compliance; demonstrated excellence in the development and implementation of contemporary policy and procedure; and demonstrated excellence in the collection, review and analysis of organizational data for the purpose of public safety service improvement.
The on-site assessment conducted in July 2012 found that the department was in compliance with all 291 standards required by CALEA to be considered for accreditation including planning and research, patrol, internal affairs, campus law enforcement, crime prevention and community involvement. In addition to the 291 standards required by CALEA, the MU Police Department met all 86 optional standards applicable to the agency.
Accreditation is active for three years. During that time, the department must remain in compliance with all applicable standards and any future standards that may be adopted by CALEA. The MU Police Department has been accredited with CALEA since 2001 and has been renewed every three years since then in 2003, 2006, 2009 and 2012.