Woonsocket, RI; In 2012 Rhode Island Police Chiefs Association (RIPCA)
established an in-state accreditation commission called Rhode Island
Police Accreditation Commission (RIPAC). According to the RIPCA
website about accreditation, “An accreditation program has long been
recognized as a means of maintaining the highest standards of professionalism. The accreditation process is a progressive and time proven management tool.
Accreditation provides a means for law enforcement agencies to systematically conduct an internal review and assessment of the agencies’ policies and procedures and an in-depth review of every aspect of the agency’s organization, management and operations.”
The RIPAC accreditation standards were formally established in May of
2013 and are comprised of 204 of the highest professional policing
standards, policies and best practices by which departments in the State
are measured. Years was dedicated to rewriting department policies,
rules, regulations, and facility improvements to comply with RIPAC
standards. Under the direction of Chief Thomas F. Oates III, the command
staff, accreditation manager, Lt. Norman Galipeau, and all department
employees, an increased collective effort in 2016 prepared the
department for its first accreditation assessment. Woonsocket Police
Department achieved RIPAC accreditation status in March 2017.
On June 23, 2020, the Woonsocket Police Department was again
recognized as an accredited member of the Rhode Island Police
Accreditation Commission. Reaccreditation is the result of a series of
policy and infrastructure updates within the Department reviewed by a
team of RIPAC professionals.
In Executive Director Christine Crocker’s Final Report, she states; “The
assessment team conducted a thorough review of all applicable
standards and proofs of compliance which consisted of written directives,
supporting documentation, interviews, and observations. Upon conclusion
of the on-site assessment, the agency was found to be in compliance with
all applicable standards.” “There were no standards found to be in noncompliance. As was expected, the agency was well prepared for the
assessment” Director Crocker said. Furthermore, Director Crocker
reported, “The Woonsocket Police Department has no issues concerning
bias-based policing, excessive force, or disciplinary matters. The lack of
issues relative to these matters is indicative of the department’s
commitment to providing professional law enforcement services to the
truly diverse community they serve.”
Each accreditation period is valid for three years when agencies must
again be reevaluated by a team of assessors from RIPAC to ensure the
Department has maintained compliance with its standards. In February
2020, RIPAC assessors reviewed the Department’s accreditation files,
proofs of compliance, and an on-site inspection on March 5, 2020. The
assessment team unanimously recommended the Woonsocket Police
Department be awarded RIPAC Reaccreditation. The Commission
unanimously approved the reaccreditation status.
Public Safety Director Eugene Jalette said, “Accreditation is truly a
rigorous goal that requires an enormous amount of hard work to ensure all
accreditation standards are fulfilled. I am truly appreciative of this work
and extremely proud of our police department.”