The State of Georgia Law Enforcement Certification Program
In March 1990, representatives of the Georgia Sheriff’s Association contacted the Department of Community Affairs (DCA) to discuss the possibility of developing law enforcement standards to use as a base guide for professional law enforcement agencies. Subsequently, DCA contacted the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police, the Georgia Municipal Association, the Association of County Commissioners of Georgia, and others to discuss their interest in and support for a standards development project.
After several months of diligent work, committee and staff members produced a comprehensive set of voluntary, model management, operational and service level standards for Georgia law enforcement agencies.
In late 1996, the GACP assigned a committee, along with key members from the Georgia Police Accreditation Coalition (GPAC), to review and further develop the process to the point where it became a viable, workable program. From this collaborative effort the Law Enforcement Certification Program, endorsed by the State of Georgia, was born.
The Certification program has identified standards that are felt to be essential to the efficient and effective operation of law enforcement agencies. Participating agencies are expected to implement all applicable standards. The standards incorporate contemporary professional thought and practices in the state, and will insure the goal of increasing the effectiveness and efficiency of Georgia law enforcement agencies.
In July 2002, the Winder Police Department was awarded the official title of a Certified Law Enforcement Agency. At that time, there were a total of 975 law enforcement agencies in the State of Georgia. The Winder Police Department became the 76th agency to be certified, placing them in the top eight percent of agencies in the state. Since that time, the department has continuously passed a re-certification assessment that is required every three years in order to maintain its status as a State Certified law enforcement agency.