New York State's Law Enforcement Accreditation Program is designed to promote maximum input from both community and law enforcement leaders. The Accreditation Council, the state Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS), the state chiefs' and sheriffs' associations, and the State Police all play an active role in the program's administration.
The Role of the Council
The Accreditation Council provides overall direction and consists of 17 members appointed by the Governor. The Council meets quarterly and issues standards, sets policy and has exclusive authority to grant accreditation status. Members include representatives from the state chiefs' and sheriffs' associations, the Superintendent of State Police, the Commissioner of the New York City Police Department, an official of a statewide police labor organization, an incumbent police officer, a deputy sheriff and a college professor of criminal justice. Other members represent the Association of Counties, the Association of Towns, the Conference of Mayors, the New York State Senate, and the Assembly.
The Role of the Division of Criminal Justice Services
The enabling legislation established the Accreditation Council within the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services. Personnel of the Division's Office of Public Safety serve as the staff arm of the Council, providing technical support to participating agencies and all aspects of daily administration. more »
There are a total of 133 Accreditation Standards which are divided into three categories. Standards in the Administration Section have provisions for such topics as agency organization, fiscal management, personnel practices and records. Training Standards encompass basic and in-service instruction as well as training for supervisors and specialized or technical assignments. Operations Standards deal with such critical and litigious topics as high-speed pursuits, roadblocks, patrol and unusual occurrences.
Participating agencies are normally expected to implement all program standards. However, some standards do not apply to all agencies, and waivers may be obtained in exceptional circumstances. The Council also recognizes that state and local laws, codes, rules and regulations and current bargaining agreements are binding in nature. As such, they take precedence over program standards and definitions.
The standards provide a detailed blueprint for professionalism that every law enforcement agency in the state can meet. They have been carefully designed to meet the following criteria.
The Accreditation Program has been endorsed by major law enforcement management and labor groups in New York as well as by the leading state associations of elected officials. Several private insurance companies have also demonstrated their confidence in the accreditation process by offering accredited agencies significant discounts in annual liability premiums.
Program standards were drafted by experienced law enforcement professionals with the practitioner in mind. Consequently, the standards do not require agencies to establish specialized units or purchase expensive new equipment. Agencies of all sizes have successfully implemented every program requirement.
Program standards specify what an agency must do to achieve accreditation status, not how the agency should go about doing it. The standards allow chief executive officers the flexibility to address local concerns in the ways that they deem most appropriate.
Uniquely suited to New York State
Program standards incorporate key provisions of New York State laws, codes, rules and regulations, and requirements set for by the Municipal Police Training Council. The standards were designed by New York State law enforcement professionals specifically for New York State law enforcement professionals.
Evaluation data demonstrate that the implementation of program standards has helped agencies of all sizes to enhance the quality of their services in specific, cost-effective ways. The standards have earned the confidence and support of law enforcement executives throughout the state.