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Managing Department of the Army civilian police officer.

Recent events have increased interest in using Department of the Army civilian (DAC) police officers for access-control operations and force protection missions. The Fort Shafter MP Battalion, U.S. Army MP Brigade-Hawaii, currently has a 59-person DAC police detachment supporting U.S. Army Hawaii and the 25th Infantry Division (Light).

This civilian police force has operated since 1991 when the Department of Defense Police Guard Company activated. The detachment's mission is to provide a professional, highly trained, motivated, and physically fit civilian police force in support of the provost marshal's law enforcement mission and contingency operations. The detachment has officers assigned to three geographical locations on Oahu (Fort DeRussy, Wainae Army Recreation Center, and the Fort Shafter headquarters) and one on the big island of Hawaii at the Pohakalua Training Area (PTA). This article provides a snapshot of the organizational structure, qualifications, training, operations, and costs associated with managing a civilian police workforce.

Organizational Structure

The Fort Shafter DAC police detachment is a civilian organization comprised of a headquarters element and three detachments. The unit is made up of General Schedule (GS), job series 083, police officers as follows:

* One GS- 11 chief of police.

* One GS-08 executive officer.

* One GS-08 training officer.

* Two GS-07 administrative assistants.

Each detachment is commanded by a GS-08 with the exception of the PTA. Because of a certain amount of autonomy, its detachment commander is a GS- 10 and the operation officer is a GS-08. The DAC police officers are hired as trainees--GS-05 with promotion potential to GS-06 upon graduation from a police academy. With few exceptions, most of the unit's employees are retired or former service members.

Basic Qualifications

The qualification and selection criteria for DAC police are governed by Army Regulation (AR) 190-56, The Army Civilian Police and Security Guard Program. Potential police officers are also required to meet the Office of Personnel Management's qualification standards for the police series. Minimum qualification standards include possessing the ability to--

* Protect property based on previous experience.

* Make decisions.

* Perform administrative and clerical duties.

* Obtain a successful medical examination.

* Qualify on weapons.

* Obtain a secret security clearance.

Basic character traits and personal qualifications such as honesty, courtesy, tact, cooperation, personal appearance, and bearing are also important factors. Good conduct, integrity, dependability, and mental and physical fitness are also required.

Other qualification requirements include specialized experience that provides the knowledge of--

* A body of basic laws and regulations.

* The operations, practices, and techniques of law enforcement.

* The maintenance of order and protection of life and property.

Creditable specialized experience may have been gained by working as a civilian or military police officer or by providing visitor protection and law enforcement in parks, forests, or other natural resource/recreational environments.

DAC police officers must also complete a physical training test, completing 2-minute, timed push-up and sit-up events (a minimum of 20 repetitions per event) and a mile run in less than 10 minutes. Successful completion of a federal, state, county, or municipal police academy may be substituted for a maximum of 3 months of specialized experience or 6 months of general experience. A comparable training course that included at least 40 classroom hours of instruction in police department procedures and methods and local laws/regulations may also be substituted.

Training

All DAC police officers training is governed by the DA Field Training and Evaluation Program (FTEP) and Training Circular 19-138, Civilian Law Enforcement and Security Officer Training (see chart). Initial and sustainment training includes such topics as--

* Report preparation.

* Interpersonal communication.

* Self-defense.

* Apprehension and search.

* Evidence handling.

* Domestic disturbance.

* Criminal law and other law enforcement topics.

The FTEP is very similar to an Army Training Evaluation Program manual. It contains evaluation criteria for tasks performed during training.

Sustainment training is the most challenging aspect of DAC police officer training management. Regulations allow for blanket overtime approval for officer training; however, this can become an expensive program. Until the recent terrorist events, the command used military police to backfill DAC police detachments, thereby allowing them to conduct a green-cycle training week once per quarter. The training week covered new procedures, weapons qualification ranges, physical fitness, and special tasks identified as areas needing improvement based on observation from the last 3 months duty performance. Now that the unit has substantially increased its force protection commitments, it must look for new ways to sustain the DAC police officers' standards. One initiative currently underway is a job book--using the two base training documents mentioned earlier--for each officer based on tasks, conditions, and standards. This training methodology, administered by the first-line supervisor, is conducted while the police officer is on duty. Tasks are completed at the supervisor's pace with a stringent adherence to training to standard and not time. Even though this method puts officers at different times in the training management process, it does allow for exceptional contact time and immediate supervisor feedback. Each supervisor is encouraged to develop miniscenarios that enhance the officers' hands-on skills. Now more than ever, leaders are asked to create training opportunities that achieve quick results and provide a basis for assessing performance against a standard.

Operations

DAC police officers are tremendous assets and bring unique backgrounds and skills to their jobs. Experience in Hawaii validates that they are respected and viewed as symbols of authority, much as is the local Honolulu Police Department. This is because they are seasoned veterans, dedicated to making a difference and continuing their patriotic service. Since the events of September 11th, the police officers have played a vital role in increasing our presence around key assets and high-payoff targets. The officers shifted focus without hesitation and fell in alongside the infantry augmentation, facilitating a seamless transition to the highest security posture in recent history. Because of their wide range of experiences and varying military backgrounds, the officers quickly adapted to rapid changes in guidance and assignments, yet their maturity level reduced the need for constant management. This alone was essential to the success of our mission.

Cost/Benefit

Many installations were exploring the option of using DAC police officers to support access control before the recent terrorist activities. Cost. The terms of payroll, equipping, and sustaining the force, is an issue that each command must determine and decide if the benefits outweigh the cost. The first step is to determine how many police officers you need to hire. AR 570-5, Manpower Staffing Standards System, establishes the formulas that calculate the number of personnel it takes to man a particular mission. The formulas consider employees' annual/sick leave and training and can be calculated for a variety of work schedules. The following is an example of determining the cost for one two-person access-control post:

* Two positions multiplied by 5.8 (manning factor for 24/7 mission)--11.6 persons.

* Entry-level grade is GS-05, step 5. The base salary using the 2001 General Schedule salary table--$24,875.

* Hawaiian cost of living allowance (COLA)--25 percent.

* Benefits--20 percent.

* Actual cost to the installation--$418,397.50 (annual salary multiplied by 1.45 [COLA and benefits formula] multiplied by the number of positions needed).

Other costs associated are a $400-a-year clothing allowance, law enforcement gear, training, and additional transportation costs.

The Directorate of Resource Management is a key player in the final decision concerning table of distribution and allowances positions and additional installation hires. The benefit is gained over time and is better measured intangibly than in dollars.

Most installations went well beyond red-cycle tasking to meet the higher threat-condition measures following September 11th. In fact, nearly every installation activated augmentation forces to meet minimum standards. As security measures were expanded when vulnerabilities were identified, commands continued to dig into combat power to man gates and secure mission-essential vulnerable areas. This option is plausible for a short time; however, the overarching concern now is to determine how long we can sustain this option without degrading the ability to sustain warfighting skills and remain ready to deploy into a large contingency or war.

Labor Unions

Federal civilian employees are entitled to representation from a labor union. DAC police units require special language in their negotiated agreement that covers unique requirements such as shift work and qualification standards found in AR 190-56, Individual Reliability Program. Leaders who manage bargaining unit employees are required to receive training from their supporting Civilian Personnel Advisory Center (CPAC). The key to success is management's constant communication with union officials and their CPAC labor-relations personnel.

Conclusion

The DAC police officers are tree professionals and have contributed immeasurably to the brigade's success. Currently, the plan is to increase the DAC police detachment and relieve a large number of combat soldiers currently performing force protection missions. The decision before senior Army leadership today is centered on the costs and benefits associated with using combat forces for long-term security missions in support of homeland defense. Hiring civilian police officers has effectively helped provide our communities with professional law enforcement and force protection. For further information about managing a DAC police detachment call 808-438-2625.
Training Course, DAC Police Officers

 Basic Skills Law Enforcement Security Supervisory Skills
 Skills (Basic Skills)

* First Aid * Unarmed Self-Defense * MP Operations
* Weapons * Searches * Traffic Section
 * M9 Pistol * Law Enforcement and Operations
 * M249 Machine Gun Security Operations * Physical Security
 * M 16A/A2 Rifle * Reports and Forms Operations
 * 12-Gauge Shotgun * Patrol Activities * Civil Disturbance
* NBC * Patrol Incidents
 * Traffic Operations
 * Physical Security
 * Civil Disturbance
 * MP Station Operations
 * Investigations


First Lieutenant Michael Moses is the former executive officer of the Fort Shafter MP Battalion.

Lieutenant John Little is the training officer for the Department of the Army Police Company, Fort Shafter MP Battalion, Fort Shafter, Hawaii.
COPYRIGHT 2002 U.S. Army Maneuver Support Center
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2002 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
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Author:Moses, Michael M.; Little, John
Publication:Military Police
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 1, 2002
Words:1602
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