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Attorney General Announces New Initiative to Train Law Enforcement

Attorney General Mark Herring has launched a new initiative to train law enforcement officers in “impartial policing” and how to deescalate dangerous situations.   

The idea was prompted by recent incidents of citizen fatalities and neighborhood protests against police across the U.S.   The program also aims to enhance cooperation between police and citizens—and help ensure that communities have trust and confidence that they’re being treated fairly.

Herring said fatal encounters between police and citizens over the last year have tested the relationships between law enforcement agencies and their communities.  He said training helps people recognize any biases that they may have and change their approach, but this program will also provide expanded professional development.

“This dual-track training initiative will give new and experienced officers additional skills and tactics for safely dealing with potentially confrontational situations, and for ensuring that each member of the community is treated equally and fairly; skills to distinguish between responding to a dangerous person and someone in a mental health crisis; to step into a tense situation and deescalate it; to build relationships with people and leaders of communities they have sworn to protect and serve.”

The Attorney General’s office will work with law enforcement and other state agencies to develop training materials that use evidence-based strategies. The program will be voluntary.


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