Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $2,100,000)
Suicide is a leading cause of death among law enforcement officers. The Bureau of Justice Assistance’s (BJA) National Suicide Awareness for Law Enforcement Officers (SAFLEO) Program, a VALOR Initiative program, provides national, culturally informed and sensitive training and technical assistance (TTA) and resources to law enforcement leaders, supervisors, officers, families, colleagues, and others to educate and increase awareness and recognition of law enforcement suicide with the aim of preventing it.
The Institute for Intergovernmental Research (IIR) and its partners in this endeavor, including the American Association of Suicidology, the Major Cities Chiefs Association, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, and the University of Kentucky Suicide Prevention and Exposure Lab, will collaborate and leverage our resources to continue to accomplish the SAFLEO Program’s deliverables and the mission to raise awareness and promote change in the policing culture about law enforcement mental health, increase the acceptance of help-seeking behavior, and reduce and prevent law enforcement suicide.
The team will utilize its members’ diverse and wide range of experience and expertise to continue to develop, enhance, and deliver a collection of virtual and in-person TTA and resources. Training will address factors associated with the risk of suicidal ideation, such as organizational stress, critical incident trauma, the nature of shift work, relationship issues, and alcohol use and abuse. This training suite includes executive, leadership and supervision, line officer, and train-the-trainer courses.
To fully administer this program, the team will provide TTA to agencies; develop and publish virtual or distance-learning opportunities; develop and provide training materials and related resources; maintain a training request database; leverage an existing website to house materials; market the TTA program training and resources; conduct evaluations of all training; and create a diverse-membership advisory board to guide project activities and help identify emerging issues in suicide awareness and prevention.
IIR will utilize a highly experienced, diverse, and inclusive team of subject-matter experts and culturally competent practitioners, instructional designers, and instructors. Training and products will be based on research; evidence-based approaches; innovative adult-learning methods; behavioral trends; and practical, relevant, and realistic applications.
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