The public is invited to offer comments about St. Charles County Emergency Communications as the department goes through the process of becoming accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc., or CALEA®. Emergency Communications provides dispatching services for all fire and EMS agencies in the county, including the St. Charles County Police and Sheriff’s departments.
An on-site assessment team will begin examining all aspects of the department’s policies and procedures, management, operations and support services beginning Monday, Feb. 10, for the agency’s Public Safety Communications Accreditation Program. As part of the assessment, both telephone and written comments will be taken.
“Accreditation by CALEA® is verification that public safety communications departments meet the Commission’s state-of-the-art standards,” says Jeff Smith, director of St. Charles County Emergency Communications. “The process is voluntary and we have chosen to go through it because it is a prestigious, highly prized recognition of public safety professional excellence.”
Comments, both written and oral, must address the department’s ability to comply with CALEA® standards. A copy of these standards is available for review at the St. Charles County Police Department, 101 Sheriff Dierker Ct., O’Fallon, MO 63366.
Comments by telephone will be taken from agency personnel and members of the community by calling 636-949-3006 from 1 – 3 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 11; they are limited to 10 minutes. Those wishing to offer written comments should send them to: Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement, Inc. (CALEA®), 13575 Heathcote Boulevard, Suite 320 Gainesville, Virginia 20155.
“St. Charles County Emergency Communications must comply with 205 standards in order to gain accredited status,” says Smith. “Our staff is, and always has been, committed to excellence in providing the best possible service to the St. Charles County citizens and first responders. Achieving this accreditation will validate what we already know -- that our staff is among the best of the best in our profession.”
Accreditation is for four years, during which the department must submit annual reports and participate in annual, remote web-based assessments to confirm continued compliance with the standards under which it was initially accredited. In 2018, the St. Charles County Police Department received an Advanced Law Enforcement Accreditation from CALEA® and underwent a similar process.