The Florida Polytechnic University Police Department is here to keep our community safe and help provide an environment where academic achievement can occur. That is a significant responsibility we take seriously through police accountability and transparency.
We are committed to being held accountable for our policies, procedures, training, operational activities, and daily interactions with students, faculty, and staff. We take that one step further by being transparent in our actions, for they speak louder than our words. We want the public to understand who we are, what our policies are and why they exist, and how Florida Polytechnic University Police Department police officers train and prepare for emergency situations.
Law enforcement is a people-centric profession. It is much more than policies and procedure manuals or reports. It’s about helping our community with dignity and compassion. You should never hesitate contacting us when our services are needed because of concerns for how you will be treated. We will always treat everyone with dignity, respect, and compassion.
Our community is diverse and represents the broad spectrum of humankind. More than simple differences of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation or identity, we also represent diversity of thought, cultures, views of social and procedural justice, and faith-based beliefs.
At the same time, our sworn officers are diverse as well and reflect the university community.
Our members are carefully trained in accordance with national and state standards in areas such as bias-free, fair and impartial policing, and human diversity to help us serve in an unbiased manner.
We remain committed to staying engaged with our community, listening to your concerns, accepting accountability for our actions, sharing our knowledge and experience with you, and remaining open to transparency.
It’s called professional law enforcement, and it’s who we are.
Chief Rick Holland, Florida Polytechnic University Police Chief
Since 2018, the Florida Polytechnic Police Department has been revising and updating our written policies and procedures to ensure they meet or exceed industry standards and best practices.
Just as universities strive for measurable excellence through accreditation, law enforcement agencies also seek to validate that policies, procedures, and training, and personnel processes are compliant with standards. Our agency recently completed a very successful accreditation compliance assessment and received our initial Florida law enforcement accreditation award. This is a significant achievement for an agency that has existed for only six years.
The university police department initiated its own self-review of policy and procedures for the use of protective action and de-escalation when officers encounter resistance or violence when performing lawful duties. Agency policy was compared to accreditation standards, use of force policy recommendations by the Florida Police Chiefs’ Association, recommendations in the federal JUSTICE Act introduced in Congress, and additional recommendations from Campaign Zero and their #8CantWait. Updates to our policies and training were made where appropriate and also noted where no changes were being considered due to agency policies already in compliance with national or state standards. Additionally, the department established a duty to intervene policy requiring officers to act when they observe another officer using unnecessary or excessive protective actions.
In addition to policy updates, the department conducted three different roll-call training sessions recently on the practice of de-escalation, a key element in some national policy recommendations. The overall de-escalation process strives to reduce subject tension and resistance, thereby allowing officers to complete lawful enforcement actions without the use of protective action.
All department members recently completed anti-bias training that focused on identifying and addressing implicit bias and cultural awareness in our daily interactions. Annual refresher training for all members to better serve our LGBTQ community is ongoing, and we also complete regular training to better serve individuals who are experiencing a behavioral health crisis. Sworn officers complete regular refresher training in law enforcement ethics.