State Board Implements Standards Aimed at Improving Interactions Between Law Enforcement Officers and Community Members
CUYAHOGA COUNTY, OH – The Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department (CCSD) has been awarded provisional certification from the Ohio Collaborative Community-Police Advisory Board (OCCPAB) for the adoption and implementation of best practices, procedures, and policies related to appropriate use of force, diversity in employment, and relations with community members.
“This is a well-deserved recognition for Sheriff Hammett and the entire Sheriff’s Department, acknowledging their good work,” said Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish. “The Sheriff’s Department has made improvements and updates that have resulted in recognitions and other notable achievements, which most recently includes being awarded several state grants and receiving top national jail accreditation. This certification adds to that list.”
The OCCPAB is a 12-person panel that was established in April 2015 by then-Governor John Kasich following a task force’s report that provided several recommendations to improve law enforcement-community interactions. The multidisciplinary group includes law enforcement, elected officials, academia, faith-based organizations, and other community members. The Buckeye State Sheriffs’ Association and the Ohio Association of Chiefs of Police partner with the OCCPAB by providing input and assisting in outreach efforts. Since its inception, the group has developed 12 statewide standards outlining best practices for law enforcement to improve trust between officers and the citizens they serve.
“As the only law enforcement agency that has jurisdiction over the entire county, it is important that we are doing everything we can to improve our relationship with the community,” said Cuyahoga County Interim Sheriff Steven Hammett. “While this certification is good progress, there is still more to be done. We will work on achieving certification for the other OCCPAB standards and will continuously look for other ways to improve relationships with those whom we serve.”
OCCPAB’s certification process includes an extensive evaluation by a reviewer to ensure that the applying agency has adopted and implemented the applicable standards. CCSD received provisional certification for the Group 1 standards. These standards outline appropriate use of force procedures and employment processes that help ensure equal opportunities and a diverse workforce. The next step involves an onsite assessment and then final review by the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services Executive Director.