Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Top Achievements for the Southlake Departments of Public Safety ~ Police and Fire

The City of Southlake is pleased to report the achievement of major milestones for both the Police and Fire Departments. The Departments of Public Safety recently underwent stringent reaccreditation processes and the departments were not only successfully reaccredited, they reached outstanding statuses for their respective departments.

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Lt. Douglas, Roland DeGrauuw and former Police Chief Steve Mylett are flanked (on the left) by Craig Hartley, Jr. Executive Director, and Richard W. Myers, Chairman of CALEA Commission (pictured right).

On March 21, 2015 several members of the Southlake Police Department traveled to Reno, Nevada for the final reaccreditation hearing before members with the Commission on Accreditation of Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc. (CALEA). As one of his last duties with the City of Southlake, former Police Chief Steve Mylett attended along with Lieutenant Douglas and Accreditation Coordinator Roland DeGraauw. During the hearing the CALEA Commissioners said they were very impressed with the Southlake Police Department, and they commended the police department for their professionalism and an extremely successful reaccreditation on-site, which took place in December 2014.  The CALEA assessment team leader called the department’s on-site inspection, “one of the best he has seen during his tenure as a CALEA assessor.”

Citizens of Southlake can feel confident that their police department is one of the tops in the nation. The Southlake Police Department was one of only a handful of agencies awarded the Accreditation with Excellence Agency Award. Agencies awarded both the Accreditation with Excellence must meet specific criteria above and beyond the standard accreditation requirements, as outlined by CALEA.  For more information regarding the required criteria, please click on http://www.calea.org/content/accreditation-excellence-0.  

The Meritorious Agency Award is given to CALEA-accredited agencies in recognition for maintaining their accreditation for 15 or more continuous years.  The Southlake Police Department has been accredited with CALEA since 2000. Interim Police Chief James Brandon said, “The men and women of the Southlake Police Department take great pride in their ability to serve our community. This achievement is a testament to their hard work and dedication and exemplifying the core values of the City – integrity, innovation, teamwork, accountability and excellence.”

CALEA Police Standards FAQs:

1)    Title of Accreditation Achieved:  *Advanced Accreditation with Excellence.  SLPD also received an additional designation as a meritorious agency having been an accredited agency for 15 consecutive years.  The Police Department has been accredited since 2000 and received its 6th accreditation award during the March 2015 CALEA Conference.

2)    Date of Award:  March 21, 2015.

3)    Accreditation Requirements:  An agency must comply with approximately 484 national “best practices” Standards.  Every three years the Police Department undergoes a formal Assessment by a team of outside CALEA Assessors.  The recent onsite Assessment (December 14-17, 2014) was conducted under the new Gold Standard Assessment model which primarily consisted of conducting over 25 interviews with personnel from the line officer to the Chief to determine compliance.  In 2012, the department had 0 non-compliant issues, 1 applied discretion and 5 file maintenance.  *In 2014, the department had 0 non-compliant issues, 0 applied discretions and 2 file maintenance.  Here is a quote from the Team Leader – Commander Gregg Jones: “It was apparent to the team that the Southlake Police Department’s focus and vision have permeated at all levels in the agency.  Community policing is at its core, which is enhanced by patrol officers due to a high proactive time during a shift. Every aspect of the agency had a community policing element associated with it”.

4)    Number of Accredited Agencies (US only):  *Approximately 882.

 

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Deputy Fire Chief Wade Carroll and Fire Chief Mike Starr with Steve Westermann, CFAI Chairperson and Roland DeGraauw.

The story is equally outstanding for the Southlake Fire Department who achieved *International Accredited Agency Status by the Commission on Fire Accreditation International (CFAI). Members of the department including Fire Chief Mike Starr, Deputy Fire Chief Wade Carroll and Accreditation Coordinator Roland DeGraauw traveled to Orlando, Florida on March 17, 2015 to receive the awards from CFAI.

A fire department agency must comply with 253 performance indicators of which 82 are core competencies spread over 10 categories and 43 criterions.  The department has been accredited since 1999 and was the first City in Texas to receive national accreditation.  This is the Southlake Fire Department’s 4th award by the Commission on Fire Accreditation International.

Every five years the Fire Department undergoes a formal Assessment by a team of outside CFAI Assessors.  The agency must also develop and provide the following major documents: Standards of Cover which describes how the department will respond within its jurisdiction with types of apparatus, personnel and most importantly, response times, Community Risk Analysis – which details and categorizes risks within the jurisdiction from low to high and its Strategic Business Plan.

In comparison to the last Assessment conducted in 2009, the department had a 57.1% reduction in strategic recommendations (from 7 to 4) and a 61.5% reduction in specific recommendations (from 13 to 5). CFAI Team Lead Deputy Chief Mike Higgins said, “The self-study manual produced by the department was of high quality and represented a significant effort by the staff of the department to produce and present a quality document.  The peer assessment team observed a strong commitment by the department to the CFAI accreditation process.  Individually and collectively, the department expressed a long standing interest in the process, having been engaged and involved from the outset of the department’s journey towards accreditation.”

Fire Chief Mike Starr gives much of the credit to the men and women of the fire department.  Starr says, “Their commitment to excellence in providing the highest standards of safety and security for the City and the citizens of Southlake sets the bar very high.  I am extremely proud of what we have accomplished together.”

There are over 35,000 fire departments in the U.S. and Canada and Southlake is one of 207 departments that have received Accredited Agency Status by the CFAI and one of only 6 municipalities in Texas. Southlake is one of only 4 cities to achieve national accreditation in both police and fire departments.  The others are El Paso, Houston, and Plano.

CFAI FIRE FAQs:

1)     Title of Accreditation Achieved:  International Accredited Agency Status.  The Fire Department has been accredited since 1999 and received its 4th award by the Commission on Fire Accreditation International – CFAI.

2)     Date of Award: March 17, 2015.

3)     Accreditation Requirements:  An agency must comply with 253 performance indicators of which 82 are core competencies spread over 10 categories and 43 criterions.  These comprise the department’s self-assessment manual (SAM).  Every five years the Fire Department undergoes a formal Assessment by a team of outside CFAI Assessors.  The agency must also develop and provide the following major documents: Standards of Cover (how the department will respond within its jurisdiction with types of apparatus, personnel and most importantly, response times), Community Risk Analysis – which details and categorizes risks within the jurisdiction from low to high and its Strategic Business Plan.  In comparison to the last Assessment conducted in 2010, the department had a 57.1% reduction in strategic recommendations (from 7 to 4) and a 61.5% reduction in specific recommendations (from 13 to 5).  A quote from the Team Leader – Deputy Chief Mike Higgins: “The self-study manual produced by the department was of high quality and represented a significant effort by the staff of the department to produce and present a quality document.  The peer assessment team observed a strong commitment by the department to the CFAI accreditation process.  Individually and collectively, the department expressed a long standing interest in the process, having been engaged and involved from the outset of the department’s journey towards accreditation”.

4)     Number of Accredited Agencies (US and Internationally):  Approximately 207.  (Texas 8).