UNCW Police Department Awarded National Law Enforcement Accreditation

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

The UNCW Police Department has been awarded national accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc. in the Law Enforcement program.

This is the UPD’s first national accreditation, which signifies excellence in public safety and commitment to the community.
“Accreditation represents an important milestone for UPD, and it is the result of a tremendous amount of hard work by the entire department,” said Vice Chancellor of Business Affairs Miles Lackey. “We’re proud of UPD and celebrate their commitment to continuous improvement.”

The CALEA Commission voted on Nov. 19 to approve accreditation during a virtual conference. Each agency being reviewed goes before CALEA’s 21-member board of commissioners, where the commission reviews all findings and determines the agencies’ accreditation status.

The accreditation follows a multi-year self-assessment phase and a meticulous site-based assessment of community engagement, policy, procedures, equipment and facilities by CALEA assessors. With the accreditation comes several benefits, including greater accountability within the police department, increased community advocacy and improved employee morale.

“I am very proud of our team, and I am grateful to the commission for their vote to award us with accreditation,” said UNCW Police Department Interim Police Chief Chris Bertram. “This award is the culmination of hard work over several years. It recognizes our department’s commitment to our community and how we serve our community with professionalism and compassion.”

The CALEA Commission develops standards based on international best practices in public safety and establishes and administers the accreditation process. The accreditation process is how a public safety agency voluntarily demonstrates the ways it meets professionally recognized criteria for excellence in management and service delivery.

“Agencies must go through a rigorous review and evaluation of their organization and then implement the necessary policy and procedure changes. The process does not stop at that point," said CALEA President Anthony Purcell, chief of police at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Police Department. "By voluntarily choosing to seek CALEA accreditation, the agency commits to an ongoing review of adherence to CALEA’s standards. Each community with CALEA accredited agencies should feel confident that their public safety organization is going above and beyond and operating under the highest standards in public safety.”

-- Venita Jenkins