KU Medical Center Police Department reaches "gold standard of public safety"

April 06, 2012

By KUMC News

Kansas City, Kan. — The University of Kansas Medical Center Police Department has earned national accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA). It is one of only four Kansas law enforcement agencies — and the state's first university police department — to earn the status, considered "the gold standard in public safety."

"We are gratified to have earned this recognition, which is the result of a three-year effort," said Richard L. Johnson, Chief of Police at the University of Kansas Medical Center. "This is a voluntary program — no one forced us to do it. But we wanted to prove to ourselves and our community that we are operating at the highest level of professional standards."

The KU Medical Center Police Department operates 24 hours a day and employs 75 full-time officers, supporting the safety of faculty, staff and students at the medical center as well as patients, visitors and staff in The University of Kansas Hospital. Under state statute, its jurisdiction includes all of Kansas City, Kan., though in general the department polices the areas surrounding the University of Kansas Medical Center's main campus at 39th and Rainbow. "We have the ability to deploy resources off campus to address anything that could be deemed a threat to the university community," Johnson said.

To earn accreditation, the department spent three years documenting procedures for its entire operation, demonstrating that it met more than 200 standards. A team from CALEA visited in December 2011 to ensure compliance with those standards. The department was notified of its accreditation on March 24, 2012, at CALEA's annual convention in Mobile, Ala.

"This was not just an exercise," Johnson said. "The objective was to put us at the top of our game, to be truly a high-performing agency."

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