When Chief Franklin started in the role in 2018, he brought with him a philosophy based on President Obama’s 21st Century Policing Task Force, focused on providing the Rochester community with the first class service it deserves. The Department’s dedicated Training Unit is committed to these principles, encouraging excellence and the continuing professional development of its officers, by providing training which far exceeds the standards mandated by the state.
The State of Minnesota requires that officers complete 48 hours of law enforcement related continuing education every 3 years, which is the license period. Documentation evidencing successful completion of this training is submitted to the Minnesota Peace Officer Standards and Training Board, which oversees peace officer licenses. As the dashboard shows, Rochester Police Department mandates 85 hours of training in the 3 year license period.
In addition, we have recently added the following on-line training as mandatory classes to be completed by each officer by the end of 2020, bringing RPD’s mandatory training hours to 97, over double what is required by POST:
- Procedural Justice and Police Legitimacy: This course will equip officers to better demonstrate their commitment to fair and impartial policing through the use of procedural justice approaches and methodologies.
- Persuasion and De-escalation 2020: This course provides officers with information to increase their abilities to influence and de-escalate people in order to achieve voluntary compliance.
- Implicit Bias Part 1: This course provides officers with information to help identify and understand implicit bias and the negative impacts it can have on law enforcement and the communities we serve.
- Implicit Bias Part 2: This course provides officers with suggestions for reducing the impact of implicit bias on law enforcement decisions and police-community relationships.
POST mandated training:
- Active officers must complete use of force training every year. This training must be based on the RPD’s use of force policy and the learning objectives provided by the POST Board.
- Active officers must complete an 8 hour course in emergency vehicle operations and in the conduct of police pursuits every five years. This training must be based on RPD’s pursuit policy and the learning objectives provided by the POST Board.
On January 25, 2018, the Minnesota POST Board approved learning objectives for training in crisis intervention and mental illness crises, conflict management and mediation, recognizing and valuing community diversity and cultural differences, to include implicit bias, as required by Minn. Stat. 626.8469. These objectives were developed through the POST Board’s training committee with the assistance of subject matter experts, other interested parties and was vetted against state and national resources. A total of 16 hours in the three areas below is mandatory, during each 3 year license period.
- Crisis Intervention/De-Escalation: Click here for course objectives
- Conflict Management/Mediation: Click here for course objectives
- Implicit Bias/Community Diversity/Cultural Differences: Click here for objectives
For the past 2 years, RPD has used Quantico Police Training to provide the mandated Implicit Bias/Community Difference/Cultural Diversity training. Despite this mandated training being offered on-line and locally, the Rochester Police Department elected to exceed the POST Board standard and contract with Quantico Police Training in order to provide RPD employees with in-person comprehensive instruction led by nationally recognized leaders and law enforcement trainers in these topics.
RPD officers are also mandated to annually complete an additional 3 hours of online Use of Force training developed by the League of MN Cities (Patrol Online)
Crisis Intervention Training (CIT):
This is a well-known 40 hour training program that gives officers hands-on de-escalation training. CIT training is a part of the culture here at RPD and has been since 2007.
- 40 hour CIT Training is provided annually
- 80% of officers have received the CIT Officer Certification
- The goal is 100%
- Officers are empowered to take the time to de-escalate incidents without using force
In addition to the CIT training, RPD and OCSO have a self-sustaining CIT program which fosters ongoing collaboration and development between police and community services and partners. RPD has had a full-time embedded mental health professional since 2018. This was the second program of its kind in the state behind Duluth, MN. The embedded mental health professional assists in the following ways:
- Assessment on scene and case consults (mental health calls primary, but assist on many other call types to provide support/ resources/ referrals)
- Collaboration with jail, hospital, and other agencies
- Reduction in transports to ER/referrals to other services (55% diverted from ER versus prior 24% average)
- Program development (911 triage of some PIC calls to crisis line, increased access to resources for officers, threat assessment team)
- Community outreach/ training
- Data collection, policy development
Integrating Communications, Assessment, and Tactics (ICAT) Training:
- ICAT Training is 16 hours of training
- Developed by the Police Executive Research Forum in collaboration with the US Department of Justice in 2016
- Integrated into our annual Use of Force Training, which is attended by 100% of sworn officers
- In addition, each newly hired RPD officer receives 2 full days (16 hours) of ICAT Training prior to beginning field training
- RPD officers receive training on responding to emotionally disturbed people, people armed with weapons other than firearms, and to constantly assess and re-assess their need to use force
- RPD officers are encouraged to try and slow things down when they can, bring less lethal options to incidents that have the potential for deadly force and keep their emotions in check, so that they can make rational decisions.