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Proposed revision to Law Enforcement standard 4.3.3 relating to annual/biennial training

At a recent meeting of the Standards Review and Interpretation Committee (SRIC) the committee directed staff to post for client comments the following proposed revised standard.  Please post your comments prior to Friday July 17th, 2020.


4.3.3 (M M M M) (LE1) Annual/Biennial Proficiency Training

At least annually, all agency personnel authorized to carry weapons are required to receive in-service training on the agency's use of force policies and demonstrate proficiency with all approved lethal weapons and electronic controlled weapons that the employee is authorized to use. In-service training for other less lethal weapons and less lethal weaponless control techniques shall occur at least biennially. In addition:

  1. proficiency training must be monitored by a certified weapons or tactics instructor;
  2. training and proficiency must be documented; and
  3. the agency must have procedures for remedial training for those employees who are unable to qualify with an authorized weapon prior to resuming official duties.

CommentaryAnnual and biennial in-service use of force refresher training need not be as formal as entry level or recruit training. Use of force In-service training can be accomplished through a combination of methods; for example, during shift briefing training sessions, reviewing legal updates on use of force issues, or conducting written or skills tests on use of force and less than lethal weapons during annual firearms qualifications courses. Proficiency levels should be established by the agency with input from certified weapons instructors or others in the agency that can validate the criteria. Demonstrated proficiency with less lethal weapons may consist of the same criteria used at entry level, or the course may be modified to either abbreviate or extend the training, based on the agency's experience with the weapon in the field.

The intent of bullet (c) is to ensure that remedial measures are provided, and that an employee failing to demonstrate proficiency with a weapon is not returned to duty with that weapon until such time as proficiency is demonstrated and documented.

Lateral neck restraints and choke holds are not covered under the constructs of this standard due to their potential for lethal consequences.  These techniques are covered under standard 4.1.6.

Unless they are applied properly, neck restraints and other similar compliance techniques that rely on cutting off the flow of oxygen to the brain have the potential to cause serious injury or death. Therefore, Any agency that authorizes the use of such less lethal weaponless control techniques should ensure that its personnel are properly trained in the use of these techniques so that the possibility of injury is minimized. Training should also include instruction on giving immediate medical aid to an individual in the event of injury or distress.  In addition to the initial training, the agency should also provide biennial refresher training to ensure that the skills required for proper application are maintained.

Training should be commensurate with the limits and scope of the employees' job responsibilities, e.g., an agency property guard having no arrest authority may be issued a baton and chemical agent, but training proficiency need only cover defensive moves. The curriculum for sworn officers would be more extensive based on the scope of their authority to use force in making arrests. Time sensitive standard.  (M M M M) (LE1)

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