Law enforcement accreditation assessment team invites public comment

Contact: Paula M. Davis

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—A team of assessors from the Michigan Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission—MLEAC—will arrive on Monday, Nov. 30, to examine all aspects of Western Michigan University Department of Public Safety's policies and procedures, management, operations and support services, Chief Scott Merlo announced.

"Verification by the team that WMU Public Safety meets the Michigan Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission's 'best practice' standards is part of a voluntary process to achieve accreditation, a highly prized recognition of law enforcement professional excellence," says Merlo.

As part of this final on-site assessment, employees and members of the general public are invited to provide comments to the assessment team. They may do so by telephone or email. The public may call (269) 387-5094 on Tuesday, Dec. 1, between the hours of 9 and 11 a.m. Email comments can be sent to crime@wmich.edu.

Telephone comments are limited to five minutes and must address the agency's ability to comply with the commission's standards. A copy of the standards is available for inspection at WMU Department of Public Safety, 511 Monroe Street, Kalamazoo, Michigan, 49006. Contact Deputy Chief Carol Dedow at (269) 387-5606 to obtain a copy of the standards.

Anyone wishing to offer written comments about WMU Public Safety's ability to comply with the standards for accreditation is requested to email the accreditation program manager at nrossow@michiganpolicechiefs.org or write the Michigan Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission at 3474 Alaiedon Pkwy, Suite 600, Okemos, Michigan, 48864.

WMU Department of Public Safety must comply with 105 standards to achieve accredited status. Merlo indicated, "Accreditation results in greater accountability within the agency, reduced risk and liability exposure, stronger defense against civil lawsuits, increased community advocacy and more confidence in the agency's ability to operate efficiently and respond to community needs."

The Accreditation Program Manager for the Michigan Association of Chiefs of Police is Ret. Chief Neal Rossow.

"The assessment team is composed of law enforcement practitioners from similar Michigan law enforcement agencies. The assessors will review written materials, interview agency members, and visit offices and other places where compliance with the standards can be observed. Once the assessors complete their review of the agency, they will report to the full Commission, which will then decide if the agency is to be granted accredited status," says Rossow.

Accreditation is valid for a three-year period during which time the agency must submit annual reports attesting to its continued compliance with those standards under which it was initially accredited.

The MACP, through its Michigan Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission, is the legitimate authority and accreditation agency in the state of Michigan. For more information regarding the Michigan Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission, write the commission at: MACP, Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission at 3474 Alaiedon Parkway, Suite 600, Okemos, Michigan, 48864 or email at nrossow@michiganpolicechiefs.org.
For more information, contact Chief Scott Merlo at (269) 387-5573.

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