Training Matters

Training matters. It keeps us alive, and it keeps you alive. But did you know the Edgar County Sheriff Department doesn’t always participate in training?

When the Paris Police Department started their Active Shooter training last fall, I asked if I could participate. It was great training.

My former Chief and I went through together as a team. We responded to each scenario, and worked through the Active Shooter drills together.

We weren’t perfect, but we did well. We even caught someone waiting in ambush that other teams missed.

Even though invited, the ECSD wasn’t there. To be fair, they only had a week’s notice, but that’s all I’d gotten, and I still found a way to get there.

A month later, PPD repeated the training so the rest of their officers could go through it. Even though invited again, ECSD was not there.

This past Spring, the PPD offered yet another Active Shooter training session. This time, ECSD Deputies participated in the training drills, but there was one notable absence—the Sheriff.

A couple years ago, Crestwood had some Active Shooter experts come in and train their staff. The Sheriff was not there either.

If my team does training (and they will), I’m going to be right there with them. Always.

ECSD actually has a training budget, but the last time I checked, they’d only spent about 10% of their annual training budget. If the officers want to go to classes, they often have to go through other departments.

A few months ago, I went to Chicago at my own expense to take a week long Officer Survival Instructor seminar called GST. I’d been waiting years to do it.

It was fantastic. Over 80 officers from across the state were there learning the system, and how to teach it to other cops. The following week, I began teaching it to local officers at no charge.

I’ll also continue training the public, particularly our schools and churches. Just this week, I worked with a church in Washington, IN to help them set up a Security Team and give them Active Shooter Response training.

I believe part of the solution is simply letting the Deputies know what training is available, and then giving them the opportunity to get there. I’ll also create a culture that expects and looks forward to training.

You can be sure that I’ll make more training mandatory, and I’ll train right alongside them, too. Training matters!

Sincerely,

Tom Dolan

2018 Candidate for Edgar County Sheriff

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