The Seattle Police Department (SPD) has taken steps towards preventing misconduct, reducing officer mistakes, and promoting health and wellness by joining the Active Bystandership for Law Enforcement (ABLE) Project.
The ABLE Project is Georgetown University Law Center’s national training and support initiative for US law enforcement agencies committed to building a culture of peer intervention that prevents harm. The project “gives officers the tools they need to overcome the innate and powerful inhibitors all individuals face when called upon to intervene in actions taken by their peers.”
All SPD officers will receive eight hours of evidence-based active bystandership education designed not only to prevent harm but to change the culture of policing.
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According to the SPD, the department was one of 60+ other law enforcement agencies selected out of hundreds across the country to take part.
“Every member of the Seattle Police Department understands how critical it is for officers to watch out for each other,” said Chief Diaz in a press release. “That responsibility includes inspiring each other to always do the right thing and being an active bystander when our behavior may need improving. Participating in the ABLE Project will encourage SPD Officers to speak up if they witness wrongdoing in their fellow officers, and you have my word those concerns will be addressed.”