CACP Bulletin

Fall 2017

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F or several years now the CACP Human Resources & Learning Committee (HRL Committee) has been engaged in discussions on workplace wellness, and strategies / programs to keep our police officers and support staff mentally healthy. The work of this Committee culminated in three major CACP wellness conferences, the most recent held in February 2017. One important takeaway from these conferences was that police lacked expertise in assessing and developing effective mental health programs for police officers and support staff. Dr. Dorothy Cotton, a long serving member of the HRL Committee, was until 2017, the only psychologist to participate in committee discussions. As a result of the increasing discussion and concern about police and first responder wellness over the last several years, Dr. Cotton recommended that a Psychologists Sub-Committee, consisting of psychologists from across Canada who have expertise in police psychology and wellness programs, be created. The HRL Committee approved this recommendation and subsequently submitted a proposal to the CACP Board of Directors. In March 2017 the CACP Board of Directors approved the recom- mendation to create a Police Psychologists Sub-Committee and Dr. Cotton then began recruiting potential members across Canada. The mandate of this sub-committee is: The Psychological Services Sub-Committee acts as a resource and adviser to the CACP HRL on practices, issues and trends in psychological services and programs as they pertain to policing. In order to meet this mandate, the Sub Committee will: • facilitate an exchange of ideas, procedures and best practices as they pertain to psychological services for police agencies; • assist the CACP HRL in disseminating psychological knowledge and research relevant to development of policy, procedure, operations and training; • work with and assist the CACP HRL in identifying best practices and sharing information related to wellness and resiliency programs for police and civilian support staff in police agencies; • create and encourage the highest standards of psychological programs for police agencies through training, education and research; • make recommendations for program development and course content at Canadian police academies/training and education institutions; • research and provide recommendations on effective psychological programs and practices; and, • establish liaisons and key partnerships with such other organizations as may be beneficial in achieving the objectives of the CACP. Key priorities and areas of focus will be to: • enhance partnerships to advance the agenda of the CACP in the areas of psychological and wellness programs by both being proactive and also addressing any issues identified by the CACP Board; • partner with such organizations as the Canadian Mental Health Association, Canadian Psychological Association, the Mental Health Commission of Canada and others to ensure that the CACP needs are being met; • ensure that ensure that human resource policies and practices reflect current and scientifically valid psychological knowledge; • create a conceptual centre of excellence related to police psychology for both psychologists and members of the policing community who may want to access such expertise. At the inaugural meeting of the Police Psychologists Sub-Committee, held at the CACP Conference in July 2017, eleven psychologists met with the members of the HRL Committee and discussed priorities and a reporting structure. The Police Psychologists Sub-Committee will meet at least three times annually. Members will be associate members of the CACP. The Chair of the sub-committee and one other member will sit as a regular member of the HRL Committee. Priorities identified for further discussion include standards pertaining to peer support programs, fitness for duty assessments, "safeguard" programs, and the transmittal of research and information to the CACP and to CACP members. The current members of the Police Psychologists Sub-Committee are: 1. Dr. Dorothy Cotton (Ontario) 2. Dr. John S. Arrowood (Ontario) 3. Dr. Sylvie Bourgeois (Department of National Defence) 4. Dr. Nicholas Carleton (University of Saskatchewan / CIPSRT) 5. Dr. Ron Frey (Ontario) 6. Dr. Kyle Handley (York Regional Police) 7. Dr. Peter Hausdorf (University of Guelph) 8. Dr. Sandra Jackson (Ontario) 9. Dr. Jeffrey Karp (Ontario) 10. Dr. Catherine Martin-Doto (Toronto Police Service) 11. Dr. Jeff Morley (British Columbia) The HRL Committee is pleased with the initial composition of this sub-committee and its linkages to several major police agencies and the Canadian Institute for Public Safety Research and Treatment (CIPSRT), which provides an enhanced connection to the CACP on national first responder wellness research and initiatives. The association with CIPSRT also provides the HRL Committee and the CACP with formal ties to academic research and to federal government discussions, mainly within Public Safety Canada, that pertain to national standards and peer reviewed programs that can benefit first responder groups. The CACP has had a long-standing partnership with the Mental Health Commission of Canada. This new Police Psychologists Sub-Committee will add great value to the ongoing efforts to improve the health and safety of police personnel. This work cannot be done in silos. The HRL Committee is excited to see a very robust frame- work developed to inform police human resource practices through quality research and a national network of senior police leaders, first responder organizations, psychologists and government. NEW POLICE PSYCHOLOGISTS SUB-COMMITTEE: Update from the CACP Human Resources & Learning Committee By Steve Schnitzer, Co-chair CACP Human Resources and Learning Committee Members of the Police Psychologists Sub-Committee with HRL Committee Chairs 10 CACP Fall 2017

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