Police answers about training not yet adequate

logo Latest in a series of posts about the Bethlehem Police logo

Public Safety Committee meeting video here

Gadfly might just pause here to remind you why he’s taking so much time with each Councilperson’s portion of discussion besides the obvious reason of enlightenment on the police issue.

One of the main purposes of Gadfly is to help you know your elected officials as well as possible so that when you come to vote again you make the most informed choice possible.

And it is not only election to Council but upcoming is a mayoral election, and it’s a good bet that 1-2-3 Councilpersons might run for mayor.

You can learn a lot about people by the quality of their questions.

So we need to be paying attention.


Like Councilwoman Crampsie Smith. Councilwoman Negron is interested in training.

So interested in fact that she asks the same question of the police three times.

How often is the training?

Neither Capt Kott nor the Chief answer that question. Asked three times.

Surprisingly, it does not seem capable of an answer. Listen.

Several different kinds of training are mentioned: cultural competence, diversity, LGBT.

Very interesting.

Several different ways of providing training are mentioned: roll call, online. scenarios.Negron

Very interesting.

But the question “how often” is not answered.

We need a list of the various kinds of training the department does. We need that list to show how often the training in each category is provided. We need to know in what way that training in each category is performed. We need to see the training record of each member of the force to ascertain that the training was completed. Etc.


Councilwoman Negron also got into the subject of accreditation.

Gadfly repeats that what he would like to see is the last two accreditation reports. We need to see what areas, if any, the department needed to shape up before accreditation was renewed. And it’s not hard to imagine that accreditation would be given with recommendations of things to work on before the next one. It would just be enlightening to see these reports.

Councilwomen Crampsie Smith and Negron might find, for example, that the bar for training to be accredited is lower than they feel necessary. Maybe you don’t need as much training to keep your status as we might think. Who knows?

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