On June 10, the DeKalb County Police Department officially received its accreditation certification from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA).
To receive the certification, CALEA officials say a department must meet a wide range of standards, covering administrative, operative and logistic policies.
“The goals of CALEA are to strengthen crime prevention and control capability, formalize central management procedures, establish fair and non-discriminatory personnel practices and improve service delivery. The DeKalb County Police Department is working diligently at these goals everyday,” said CALEA Regional Program Manager Vincent A. Dauro. “Many agencies are reluctant to have outside reviewers come in and review their work and processes and detail any deficiencies. It involves risks and it requires that a department be open to change to meet all requirements.”
DeKalb County Public Safety Director Cedric Alexander says that it was critical for the Police Department to welcome CALEA when they came to inspect the Department in November 2013.
“We understand that the CALEA process minimizes the agency’s exposure to liability, demonstrates accountability to the public and guarantees professional management practices,” said Alexander. “In practical terms, this accreditation confirms this agency’s commitment to excellence in law enforcement.”
CALEA, founded in 1979, is a voluntary international program that demonstrates a department’s commitment to excellence, while serving its citizens. CALEA has established about 480 standards, which departments are required to meet. The standards are the benchmarks for today’s public safety agencies.
To meet all the CALEA standards, departments are required to produce the creation of written directives and exhibit the ability to show compliance with CALEA standards.
“I want to thank our staff. They worked tirelessly to build the evidence year-round for three years and built the files for meeting each of these standards,” said Interim DeKalb County Police Chief J. Conroy. “This is a tremendous opportunity and recognition for our department and we thank CALEA for the recognition.”
Officials say the CALEA accreditation offers a blueprint to agency heads, whether police chief, sheriff or superintendent, on how to promote efficient use of resources and improves service delivery, regardless of size, geographic location or agency responsibilities.
Agencies are accredited for three-year periods. With the June 10 recognition, DeKalb County continues its legacy of having the accreditation for more than 15 consecutive years, passing the CALEA requirement test seven times in a row.