First Ever National Consortium Dedicated to Preventing Law Enforcement Suicide to Meet

News from Sheriff's Office, Posted on Thu, 05/02/2019 - 3:18pm

The Cattaraugus County Sheriff's Office participates in Law Enforcement Suicide Prevention Initiative.

One officer suicide is one too many. In recent years, more officers have died by suicide than were fatally shot in the line of duty. The time has come to take action to protect and serve those who protect and serve our communities.

On April 30, 2019, the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) convened the National Consortium on Preventing Law Enforcement Suicide (the Consortium) in partnership with the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention and the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA). The Cattaraugus County Sheriff's Office is proud to participate in the first ever Consortium of its kind dedicated to raising awareness of and preventing law enforcement suicide. Sheriff Timothy S. Whitcomb will represent the Cattaraugus County Sheriff's Office in these critical efforts.

Sheriff Whitcomb states, "There is an administrative culture change that needs to be addressed in our para-military chain of command structure. It is time not just to Protect and Serve but to also prioritize Protecting and Serving those who have chosen to Protect and Serve".

Over the next 18 months, the Consortium will lead a groundbreaking national conversation around the issue of law enforcement suicide. Experts from law enforcement agencies and families, mental health and suicide prevention services, and academia will examine the full spectrum of law enforcement suicide. The Consortium will leverage its collective expertise to produce a comprehensive report with recommendations on consistent definitions and terminology relating to officer suicide; policy and procedures updates; research and data collection improvements; effective messaging strategies; and promising practices in prevention , intervention and postvention. "We choose a career in law enforcement because we are driven by a calling to help others and to protect and serve our communities. We know when we take the oath that our job comes with certain risks; however, that does not mean we do not need adequate support for the emotional and physiological impact that can result from the job," said IACP President Paul M. Cell.

To learn more about the National Consortium on Preventing Law Enforcement Suicide, please visit https://www.bja.gov/national-officer-safety-initiatives/index.html, https://www.theiacp.org/resources/document/law-enforcement-suicide-prevention-and-awareness, and https://www.theactionalliance.org

About the IACP

The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) is the world's largest and most influential professional association for police leaders. With more than 30,000 members in over 150 countries, the IACP is a recognized leader in global policing. Since 1983, the association has been speaking out on behalf of law enforcement and advancing leadership and professionalism in policing worldwide.

The IACP is known for its commitment to shaping the future of the police profession. Through timely research, programming, and unparalleled training opportunities, the IACP is preparing current and emerging police leaders-and the agencies and communities they serve-to succeed in addressing the most pressing issues, threats, and challenges of the day.

The IACP is a not-for-profit 501c(3) organization headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia. The IACP is the publisher of The Police Chief magazine, the leading periodical for law enforcement executives, and the host of the IACP Annual Conference, the largest police educational and technology exposition in the world. IACP membership is open to law enforcement professionals of all ranks, as well as non-sworn leaders across the criminal justice system. Learn more about the IACP at www.theIACP.org.

About the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention

The National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention is the public-private partnership working to advance the National Strategy for Suicide Prevention and make suicide prevention a national priority. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration provides funding to EDC to operate and manage the Secretariat for the Action Alliance, which was launched in 2010. Learn more at theactionalliance.org and follow the Action Alliance on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

About the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance

BJA helps to make American communities safer by strengthening the nation's criminal justice system: Its grants, training and technical assistance, and policy development services provide state, local and tribal governments with the cutting edge tools and best practices they need to reduce violent and drug-related crime, support law enforcement, and combat victimization. To learn more about BJA, visit www.bja.gov, or follow us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/DOJBJA) and Twitter (@DOJBJA). BJA is part of the Department of Justice's Office of Justice Programs.

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