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AAC


tention of law enforcement officers, including resiliency pro- grams, educational opportunities, and compensation and ben- efit packages available to law enforcement officers.


Subcommittee 1 Subcommittee 1 evaluated current law enforcement train-


ing programs in Arkansas in order to make recommendations for improvement. Programs under evaluation included, but were not limited to, the Arkansas Law Enforcement Training Academy (ALETA), Arkansas Criminal Justice Institute (CJI), and Field Training Officer (FTO) Programs. While these pro- grams already provide mandatory racial bias training through required courses on de-escalation and cultural, racial, and community relations, one of the main areas of discussion cen- tered on further improving cultural competency. As such, the subcommittee identified that increasing the minimum train- ing standards for FTO programs and guidelines established by the Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Train- ing (CLEST) will allow law enforcement officers to be better prepared to navigate cultural and racial issues with improved skills of cultural competency. Likewise, the Task Force is committed to improving race and community relations and has recommended various methods


                         


        


  


COUNTY LINES, WINTER 2021  


COVER STORY


of reinforcing the correct legal behavior of both law enforce- ment and citizens. Recommendations to this aim include de- veloping a multi-lingual “know your rights” campaign and applying for funding of body cameras for all front-line duty officers. Another key area of focus was the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) training, which trains officers to identify behav- ior indicative of a mental health crisis, how to de-escalate vio- lent situations, and how to divert those who are mentally ill to mental health care systems instead of to jail. Tis training involves three elements: mental illness awareness and recogni- tion, de-escalation, and the utilization of resources. Arkansas is the only state in the country to establish a crisis intervention partnership with law enforcement agencies, state government, and counties, and due to its success, the Task Force encourages the expansion of Crisis Stabilization Units (CSUs). Official recommendations made by Subcommittee 1: • To include the following into the minimum standards for all FTO programs:


• Communication skills (making sure officers are effec- tively communicating internally and externally) Implicit bias (how to identify blind spots and uncover


• See “BLUE” on Page 26 >>>


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