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Accreditation assessment team to visit ECU, invites public comment

GREENVILLE, N.C.   (Nov. 24, 2009)   —   A team of assessors from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc. (CALEA), will arrive Dec. 5 to examine all aspects of the East Carolina University Police Department’s policy and procedures, management, operations, and support services, according to Chief Scott Shelton.
 
Verification by the team that ECU Police Department meets the commission’s state-of-the-art standards is part of a voluntary process to gain accreditation—a highly prized recognition of public safety professional excellence, he said.
 
As part of the on-site assessment, agency personnel and members of the community are invited to offer comments at a public information session on Dec. 7 at 3 p.m. The session will be conducted in Room 244, Mendenhall Student Center at ECU.
 
If for some reason an individual cannot speak at the public information session but would still like to provide comments to the assessment team, he or she may do so by telephone. The public may call 737-1580 on Dec. 7, between 10 a.m. and 12 p.m.
 
Telephone comments, as well as, appearances at the public information session are limited to 10 minutes and must address the agency’s ability to comply with CALEA Standards. A copy of the standards is available at the East Carolina University Police Department. Local contact is Annette Parker, accreditation manager, at 328-2462.
 
Persons wishing to offer written comments about the ECU Police Department’s ability to meet the standards for accreditation are requested to write: Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement, Inc. (CALEA), 10302 Eaton Place, Suite 100, Fairfax, VA 22030-2215.
 
The East Carolina University Police Department has to comply with a total of 362 applicable standards in order to gain accredited status, Shelton said.
 
The CALEA Program Manager for ECU Police Department is Dennis Hyater. He explained the assessment team is composed of public safety practitioners from similar, but out-of-state agencies. The assessors will review written materials, interview individuals, and visit offices and other locations where compliance can be witnessed.
 
The assessors are: Team Leader Jerry Stewart, director of Iowa State University Public Safety, and Assessor Debbie Ellis, administrative services supervisor of California State University at Fullerton Police Department.
 
Once the assessors complete their review of the agency, they report back to the full commission, which will then decide if the agency is to be granted accredited status, Hyater stated.
 
Accreditation is for three years, during which time the agency must submit annual reports attesting continued compliance with those standards under which it was initially accredited.
 
For more information regarding the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, write the commission at 10302 Eaton Place, Suite 100, Fairfax, VA 22030-2215; or call (800) 368-3757 or (703) 352-4225; or e-mail calea@calea.org.