Commission for Accredited Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA)
The Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc. (CALEA), was established as an independent accrediting authority in 1979 by the four major law enforcement membership associations: International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP); National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE); National Sheriffs' Association (NSA); and Police Executive Research Forum (PERF). The Executive Directors of these four associations appoint members to the Commission annually; an endorsement requires a majority vote for each appointment.
The Commission has 21 members; 11 members are law enforcement practitioners; the remaining 10 members are selected from the public and private sectors. Commissioners are appointed to a term of three years. The position of Commissioner is voluntary and receives no salary, although travel and per diem expenses are provided when conducting Commission business.
CALEA maintains a small, professional staff managed by an Executive Director. The staff conducts all administrative and operational duties as directed by the Commission. Commission staff is available to assist applicant and accredited agencies through a toll-free telephone number. CALEA produces a newsletter and offers workshops to explain the accreditation process and standards during the Commission Conference held three times annually.
The Commission's Authority: CALEA derives its general authority from the four major law enforcement membership associations mentioned above. Their members represent approximately 80% of the law enforcement profession in this nation. The Commission derives its accreditation authority from those agencies that voluntarily participate in the accreditation program.
The Purpose of the Commission: The overall purpose of the Commission's accreditation program is to improve delivery of law enforcement service by offering a body of standards, developed by law enforcement practitioners, covering a wide range of up-to-date law enforcement topics. It recognizes professional achievements by offering an orderly process for addressing and complying with applicable standards.
The Voluntary Nature of the Accreditation Program: Successful completion of the accreditation program requires commitment from all levels of the organization, starting with the chief executive officer. To foster commitment, a decision to participate should be voluntary. To this end, the Commission insures that law enforcement accreditation™ is and will continue to be a voluntary program.
Benefits: Besides the recognition of obtaining international excellence, the primary benefits of accreditation include controlled liability insurance costs, administrative improvements, greater accountability from supervisors, increased governmental and community support.
Police Department Involvement: The Port Orange Police Department has been an internationally accredited agency through the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) since 2004. The Department has been accredited with Excellence, the highest level of recognition available.