LINCOLN – Today, Governor Pete Ricketts, Crime Commission Director Darrell Fisher, Nebraska State Patrol Colonel Brad Rice, and Nebraska law enforcement agencies announced that the state’s law enforcement training agencies are working to implement Blue Courage, a training grant awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance. At the news conference, law enforcement leaders said the Blue Courage initiative will support law enforcement agencies’ efforts to increase the professionalism of their officers and improve relationships between law enforcement agencies and the communities they serve.
“National events have highlighted the importance of supporting good relationships between our communities and the courageous men and women who help protect public safety,” said Governor Ricketts. “Nebraska is blessed to have good relationships between our law enforcement agencies and communities. The Blue Courage initiative will help our law enforcement training agencies build on this strong foundation.”
In 2015, Nebraska was selected by the Bureau of Justice Assistance to pilot Blue Courage. Following the pilot, Nebraska received additional resources toward complete state immersion, which will allow the agencies to provide this training to existing law enforcement personnel.
“We are excited and honored that many of Nebraska’s law enforcement partners have adopted the Blue Courage training,” said Nebraska Crime Commission Director Fisher. “Blue Courage aims to improve the growth and development, as well as the emotional, physical, and general well-being of our law enforcement officers. We are truly grateful not only to our law enforcement partners, but also to the Blue Courage organization, the International Association of Directors of Law Enforcement Standards & Training, and the Bureau of Justice Assistance for their help in launching this important initiative.”
The Blue Courage program aims for three main goals:
- Increased professionalism by law enforcement officers, both on and off duty, by reigniting their sense of passion, purpose, and commitment.
- Improved physical, psychological, and emotional well-being.
- Improved relationships between police and the communities they serve.
Three Nebraska law enforcement agencies joined the Governor at the news conference including the Nebraska State Patrol (NSP), the Omaha Police Department, and the Lincoln Police Department. At the news conference NSP said that the agency’s 444 sworn officers had received a two hour block of Blue Courage training during annual in service. Additionally NSP’s 19 new troopers, who graduated last week, received Blue Courage training during camp.
“The members of our agency are grateful to live in a state where citizens respect and appreciate law enforcement, and we are thankful for their allegiance and value the trust they place in us,” said Nebraska State Patrol Colonel Rice. “The Blue Courage Initiative, is just one more way we can instill in our troopers the importance of character, good judgment, and the value of building trust and showing respect for all people.”