If you’re a cop or someone who works with them closely, you know that the stress of being a law enforcement officer are something that the average person can’t even imagine. While most civilians will probably only endure a handful of traumatic events in their lives, with most of them, like deaths in the family or injury, a fairly expected part of life, police officers experience these things on a daily basis. Keep reading to learn more about how critical incident training from Peer Support Central is helping law enforcement officers be more mentally prepared for the challenges of their job as well as how you can start your journey toward being a peer support specialist who provides essential training and counseling to these first responders.
Cops Deal With Critical Incidents On A Daily Basis
Critical incidents are stressful events that have the potential to overwhelm the average adult’s coping skills. While law enforcement officers are trained to enter, assess, and control traumatic incidents with the utmost professionalism, there are some situations that can impact them in a profoundly negative way.
The mental and emotional triggers for each law enforcement officer are different, and many may not even realize how seriously they’ve been affected until days or even months after the fact. One thing that compounds the challenge of dealing with critical incidents in law enforcement is that many cops feel that it’s “shameful” to admit to being affected by a traumatic event or seeking the services of a counselor to help them through it.
That’s why it’s so important to provide police officers with training on how to deal with critical incidents before they happen. Peer support programs both introduce and normalize the idea of discussing traumatic events in a productive manner, so that cops are primed to do so when they need it. Let’s take a look at some examples of how critical incident training is helping law enforcement officers in the real world.
Two Real-World Examples Of Critical Incident Training For Law Enforcement
Street Leadership – Illinois State Police Academy (ISPA)
This police department utilizes a street-level leadership training program to help police supervisors handle critical incidents in the best possible way. Utilizing classroom time, tabletop drills, and live scenarios, offers are able to put their gut reactions under a microscope. This can reveal risky trends, as Dick Fairburn, critical incident training coordinator for ISPA explains on PoliceOne.com: “As we face increasing threats from ever more violent felons, who are increasingly armed with rifles, the need to slow our response and organize into teams becomes more important than ever. Should we face a…terrorist attack, conventional response tactics will only feed a steady supply of potential police casualties to the trained and prepared killers.”
Humane Treatment of the Mentally Ill – Kitsap Readiness Response Center
Critical incidents aren’t always life-threatening events. In some cases, law enforcement officers are called upon to settle disputes between individuals that have not yet become violent. When these individuals are mentally ill, it takes a cautions and well-trained law enforcement officer to understand the best plan of action. This information, provided to Kitsap police officers via a critical incident training course, recently allowed one cop to defuse a situation with an autistic student before anything violent happened. “Kitsap Sheriff’s Office Detective Sgt. Eric Bockelie said the 40-hour training gives law enforcement officials more insight into the situations they will encounter. At the same time, it gives them the skills to de-escalate situations and solve problems while keeping the public and themselves safe,” reports CorrectionsOne.com.
Peer Support Central Provides The Critical Incident Training You Need!
If you’d like to provide your own officers with this type of vital training, contact Peer Support Central today. We have mobile workshops and online classes that can prepare your force for the challenges ahead. Enroll today.