Monday, April 25, 2011

KC Sheriff, SPD to implement training to reduce physical conflict

Seattle Times article

Some highlights:

"Sanford said officers need to be taught how to slow down situations and reduce the flow of adrenaline. Rahr acknowledged previous training has focused on quick physical compliance without considering less dangerous methods."

"People need to be able to "tell their side of the story," and officers need to explain what they are doing, and even more why they are taking certain steps."

The idea that an arrest or police stop involves two way interaction, and that officers need to observe, not just give orders, is exactly what I was addressing in my older post, "Citizen's Handbook on Police."

The executive director of the police training commission also offers this puzzling explanation:

"Hawe said a key element of the program is to develop interpersonal-communication skills among recruits in an era when texting and social media have hindered verbal abilities."

Is Facebook really the cause of a person's actions in fight or flight situations? Have we evolved that quickly? Such an inane excuse. The former quotations offer a better, more earnest explanation. Prior training failed to emphasize that citizens have a perspective too, and are not programmed to respond in exactly the right way.