VBT Police Department Earns Prestigious Accreditation From MACP
The Charter Township of Van Buren Police Department is proud to announce they are amongst forty-two agencies accredited by the Michigan Association of Chiefs of Police (MACP) through its Michigan Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission, the only local legitimate authority and accreditation agency in the State of Michigan. Currently, there are 583 law enforcement agencies in the State of Michigan, thus the accreditation places the Van Buren Township Police Department in the top tier of law enforcement agencies.
The accreditation was attained during a three-year-long process that was initiated by retiring Public Safety Director Greg Laurain. The Michigan Association Chiefs of Police unanimously voted “yes” in favor to approve accredited status for the Van Buren Township Police Department. Director Laurain, Police Chief Jason Wright, and Accreditation Manager Officer Adam Byrd accepted the accreditation on February 8th during a formal conference and ceremony at the historic Amway Plaza located in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan. Accreditation Manager Sergeant Louis Keele was unable to attend the ceremony, but his efforts helped lead the department towards achieving this goal.
“The citizens of Van Buren Township deserve a police agency that adopted established policies that model current standards of excellence and developed effective procedures within the police department,” said Laurain. “This accreditation places a stamp of approval by the highly respected Michigan Association Chiefs of Police that our department is a proactive, industry leader in law enforcement.”
The accreditation was engaged under the direction and leadership of Sergeant Louis Keele and assisted by Union President and Police and Communications Recruiter Adam Byrd. Both served as Accreditation Managers and were charged with coordinating the department’s compliance with the 108 standards and 400+ tasks it was required to meet to achieve accreditation status.
The accreditation comes at an opportune time as law enforcement reform is part of a larger national discourse in light of recent incidents that have been featured prominently in the media.
“At a time right now where you have law enforcement reform being hotly discussed, we are proud to be in the top forty-two agencies within the State of Michigan that proactively took on the challenge and succeeded in getting accredited,” said Keele.
The Van Buren Township Police Department took three years to accomplish all the 400+ tasks, modification of policies, and execution and monitoring of compliance. Public Safety personnel will gain a long-term benefit having achieved accreditation for the department.
“The process and expectations set forth by the Michigan Association Chiefs of Police were tremendously challenging,” said Byrd. “By modifying our policies, it provides us a pathway to further success when it comes to criminal investigations, liability, and the ability to succeed with grants that require our organization to have an accredited status.”
There were several steps involved in earning the prestigious accreditation. Sergeant Keele requested an assessment from the MACP once all the necessary policies were modified to adapt to the MACP mandates. As part of the assessment review, the assessors took a tour of the station, interviewed personnel, and rode with officers to visually ensure that the Van Buren Township Police Department’s personnel was in absolute compliance with the standards mandated by MACP Accreditation Protocols.
According to Police Chief Jason Wright, working with the union and securing support from membership was an essential part of the accreditation process being successful. “It is extremely refreshing to see the positive attitude of police department personnel throughout this three-year accreditation process,” he said.
To maintain accreditation, the Van Buren Township Police Department will be reevaluated every three years but are expected to meet the standards annually.
For more information about the Van Buren Township Police and Public Safety department, visit vanburen-mi.org or call 734.699.8934.