What does this mean to You?
As a citizen, this is good news! The accreditation program gives the Ashland Police department the tools necessary to ensure that all policies and procedures conform to the most up-to-date professional law enforcement standards. State Accreditation through the Kentucky Association of Chiefs of Police (KACP) is not mandatory, but it does reflect the department's willingness to demonstrate professional excellence to the Citizens of Ashland. Law enforcement agencies at state and local levels must demonstrate voluntarily that they meet the stringent criteria. The K.A.C.P. administers the accreditation process and awards law enforcement agencies with certification. The overall goal of the accreditation program is to promote professionalism and improve the delivery of law enforcement services. Currently, the Ashland Police Department is one of only 71 law enforcement agencies in the state that is currently accredited and have achieved this honorable goal.
What are the Standards the Agency must meet?
The standards address six major law enforcement topics:
- Role, Responsibilities and Relationships with Other Agencies
- Organization, Management and Administration
- Personnel Administration
- Law Enforcement Operations, Operational Support and Traffic Law Enforcement
- Prisoner and Court-related Services
- Auxiliary and Technical Services
Designed to reflect the best professional practices in each of the six areas, the standards deal with the "what to", leaving the decisions of "how to" up to each agency. The accreditation process can take up to several years for initial accreditation.
Agencies are, of course, expected to come into compliance with all applicable mandatory standards - including new ones enacted by the K.A.C.P. following accreditation or the previous reaccreditation.
Benefits to the Community
- Recognition that the agency's managerial and operational policies and procedures are consistent with best practices and recognized proffesional standards.
- Assurance that every aspect of the agency's personnel system is in accord with professional standards.
- Assures the community that the agency is committed to providing the highest quality services and that its policies and procedures are not only effective and responsive but fair and equitable.
- Enhances community understanding, cooperation and support of the agency and it's role in the community.
- Liability litigation is deterred.
- State-of-the-art, impartial guidelines for evaluation and change when necessary.
- Ongoing evaluation of whether agency resources are being utilized in the best interest of it's mission assignment.
- Provides neutral guidelines for developing strong budget justifications - especially for personnel and their allocation across function and activities.
- Promotes standardization of policies, thereby increasing efficiency in handling calls for assistance, referrals and joint investigations with other agencies.
- Promotes relationships with prosecutors, courts, correctional agencies and state and local government officials.
- Adds to employee confidence and assures that they are a part of an agency which is recognized as being a provider of truly professional police services.