USE OF SOFT BODY ARMOR BY LAW ENFORCEMENT PERSONNEL
Submitted by: Division of State Associations of Chiefs of Police (SACOP)
WHEREAS, soft body armor is available to law enforcement personnel to protect against life threatening or potentially disabling injuries; and
WHEREAS, currently, six American police officers are feloniously shot every twenty-four hours, and statistics have shown that since 1987, more than 3,000 law enforcement officers have survived life threatening injuries because they were protected by their body armor; and
WHEREAS, studies of incidents of law enforcement officers fatally shot indicate that 42% of those officer deaths were preventable if they had been wearing body armor; and
WHEREAS, according to Federal Bureau of Investigation statistics, the risk of sustaining a fatal injury for officers who do not wear body armor is fourteen times greater than for officers that do; and
WHEREAS, the International Association of Chiefs of Police recognizes the responsibilities of law enforcement executives to do all that is possible to protect on-duty field and investigative personnel, now therefore be it
RESOLVED, that the International Association of Chiefs of Police duly assembled at its 115th Annual Conference in San Diego, California recommends that all police executives communicate the importance of wearing body armor and that all law enforcement agencies take the following steps:
Ï Obtain proper fitting body armor for all law enforcement officers of their agency.
Ï Establish an ongoing program to educate all their agency personnel about their obligation to protect themselves, as well as the "life and death" advantages of the routine wear of body armor.
Ï Adopt a mandatory wear policy for all uniformed personnel.
Ï Conduct periodic and regular inspections of issued soft body armor to ensure proper fit and useable condition, replacing defective armor as needed or recommended by the manufacturer; and therefore be it
FURTHER RESOLVED, that the IACP calls upon public and private entities to ensure that state, local and tribal law enforcement has the resources necessary to purchase this vital equipment.
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