Bloomfield Township police seek public input for accreditation process

By: Tiffany Esshaki | Birmingham - Bloomfield Eagle | Published November 18, 2019

BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP — The Bloomfield Township Police Department is moving closer to accreditation from the Michigan Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission, and the next step in the process is in residents’ hands.

A team of assessors from the commission will assess the department Dec. 2-3 to evaluate every aspect of the department’s operations, from policies and procedures to management, support services and community relations.

“The accreditation results in greater accountability within the agency, reduced risk and liability exposure, stronger defense against civil lawsuits, increased community advocacy, and more confidence in the agency’s ability to operate efficiently and respond to community needs,” Police Chief Phil Langmeyer said in an email.

A copy of the 105 standards that must be met for accreditation can be found at the police station, and they can be obtained by calling Langmeyer at (248) 433-7750.

As part of the on-site assessment, a voluntary part of the process, employees and members of the general public will be invited to share comments with the Michigan Law Enforcement Accreditation Commission team by phone or email. Participants can call (248) 723-3580 between 10 and 11:30 a.m. Dec. 3 to speak directly to assessors. Comments can also be submitted via email at jmurphy@bloomfieldtownship.org or to Michigan Association of Police Chiefs Program Manager Neal Rossow at nrossow@michiganpolicechiefs.org. The Michigan Association of Police Chiefs oversees the accreditation program.

“We’re not looking for anything specific from the public,” said Langmeyer. “They are welcome to call and talk to the assessors about the Police Department and the opinions they have. I am hoping the comments from the public are shared with us so that we can consider any opinions in how we move forward, but I am not sure if we will hear about every comment or if they just tell us a general overview.”

The accreditation, if granted, would be valid for three years, during which time the department must submit annual reports attesting to its continued compliance with the standards.

“The assessors will review written materials, interview agency members, and visit offices and other places where compliance with the standards can be observed. Once the assessors complete their review of the agency, they will report to the full commission, which will then decide if the agency is to be granted accredited status,” Rossow said in a prepared statement.

Asked whether the potential budget cuts and staff reductions facing the department will impact the accreditation process at all, Langmeyer said there shouldn’t be a problem.

“This process is about the department having policies and procedures in place that are nationally accepted, and the number of people we have will not have an effect on that,” Langmeyer said. “I have always known we have a great department that does things the right way. This accreditation process will be bringing in outside people to look at our processes and confirm we are doing them the right way. There are 19 departments in the state that have finished this process, and I’m excited to get Bloomfield Township on that list.”

The accreditation process application began under former Police Chief Scott McCanham, who retired in May after two years in the position to relocate to Midland.