UAPS recognized among the best
The University of Alberta’s excellent safety record on campus has been formally recognized, thanks to certification by the continent’s tops accreditation commission.
This summer, University of Alberta Protective Services became the first Canadian university peace officer agency to be awarded accredited status by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies.
“When we look at the police organizations we interact with, it is both the Edmonton Police Service and the Camrose Police Service, both of which are accredited through the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies,” said Bill Mowbray, director of UAPS. “We need to hold ourselves to their same high standards so that our university community can have the same level of confidence.”
The Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies was created in 1979 as a credentialing authority through the joint efforts of some of the top law-enforcement executive associations. Mowbray says the original purpose of the agency’s accreditation programs was to set modern standards for policing across North America. That mandate evolved to include policing on campuses in the United States and, thanks to the U of A’s Protective Services in Canada.
Mowbray says Protective Services has spent the last three years doing the demanding work of gaining this accreditation, which included re-examining hundreds of policies, directives, practices and procedures. Accreditors came to campus with a checklist of more than 300 items that included everything from examination of protocol around typical safety matters and emergency preparedness to how Protective Services handles everything from of exhibits to complaints against an officer.
And while UAPS was under no obligation to seek this accreditation, Mowbray says the benefits of undergoing the accreditation are many, ranging from ensuring that Protective Services exceeds government-imposed standards, to helping with recruitment to strengthening accountability in the community.
“I have always spoke of this accreditation in terms of community confidence,” said Mowbray. “The university can have the confidence that Protective Services holds itself to absolutely the highest and most modern law-enforcement standards in the business.”