The commission, alongside the Department of Public Safety (DPS), is seeking comments from both the public and law enforcement on Missouri’s current standards and disciplinary practices for officers.
The results of the survey are to be discussed in two virtual listening sessions open to the public on Aug. 31 and Sept. 2 at 2 p.m. The commission will continue to gather public comments made during the sessions via email.
The survey stated the commission “believes specific experiences and interactions between members of the public and law enforcement will be beneficial in assessing the role and influence of law enforcement training.”
The request comes as the nation continues to grapple with police brutality and racism with calls for change resounding across the country following the death of George Floyd, a Black Minneapolis man, at the hands of police officers in May. Large demonstrations broke out across the U.S., including in several places in Missouri.
Gov. Mike Parson has decried the actions which led to Floyd’s death and called for the now-former officers responsible to be held accountable. He’s also called legislators back to Jefferson City to address crime in Missouri in an ongoing special session.
The POST commission is tasked with establishing the core curriculum for Missouri’s 19 basic training academies, definitions, rules, and regulations for the overall program and continuing education of officers. It also serves as an advisory group for the DPS director.
The commission is not involved with the revocation of licenses of officers, but it can establish a procedure for the relicensing of peace officers when they have expired.
In addition, the POST Commission can set the minimum hours of needed basic training for peace officers and set the standards for the basic training of peace officers.
In a statement, the commission said officers are required to undergo 24 hours of training in studies across various areas of their jobs in order to maintain their peace officer license.
The POST Program licenses peace officers and ensures compliance with certain requirements. It can also conduct disciplinary investigations. Additionally, the program licenses law enforcement basic training centers and instructors, according to its website.
The POST Commission is made up of 11 members who are expected to serve a three-year term. The makeup is three police chiefs, three sheriffs, one representative of a state law enforcement agency, two peace officers at or below the rank of sergeant employed by a political subdivision, one chief executive officer of a training academy, and a public member.
Gov. Mike Parson named two new members to the board in June.
The POST Commission is accepting comments through Aug. 26. You can provide feedback at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/LETraining_Public.