This summer the Greenville Police Department will seek re-accrediation under the nationally accepted professional standards of the Commission for Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, also known as CALEA.
Of 18,000 law enforcement agencies across America, only about 728 are nationally accredited.
National accredition is a recognition by its peers that the Greenville Police Department is operating under the best practices available and accepted by the police profession. It forces a department to adopt and adhere to nationally accepted professional standards. In summary, accreditation forces a police agency to strive for excellence.
GPD received its first accredited status in 1996. Accreditation at that time required the department to grow and change aggresively; to move from a small town police department with minimal technology and minimal training to a modern, forward-thinking agency. Accreditation drove the construction of our current police headquarters, as well as the development of personnel who are better trained and better equipped to address the needs of the community into the 21st Century.
Since that initial accreditation process, the Greenville Police Department has been re-examined several times by the CALEA representatives, and has been re-accredited each time. National accreditation is valid for 3 years.
As the re-accreditation process get nearer, the public will be asked to provide feedback to the accreditation assessment team, comprised a group of law enforcement professionals from across the nation who will come to Greenville in August and examine our department.
The assessment team will also examine closely all aspects of the department and will interview police officers and elected officials to determine if the department is doing all the things we are supposed to be doing.
Meeting the accreditation standards is not easy, but the benefts to the agency and to the community include a more professional law enforcement agency, a commitment to continual improvement and strategic planning, and a better police force overall, providing for a safer community.