As the country continues to mourn the victims of the tragic event at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, the Westland Police Department is adding measures to their safety and security programs to help ensure that our Westland school students and staff are safe and prepared with the finest training and protocols. This includes the continuation of certifying over 2,700 Wayne-Westland Community School District staff and volunteers in ALICE (Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evaluate) by our department’s certified instructors. Another crucial enhancement is the expanded and Enhanced Crossing Guard School Safety Program, increasing personnel from 12 to 27 with additional lifesaving training.
“The Westland Police Department has always been on the forefront of the training of our force in every aspect of safety and security. We have continued that belief by preparing our officers to respond to violent, armed incidents within our schools”, said Westland Police Chief, Jeff Jedrusik. These training programs include our Officers being trained and certified as Active Shooter Instructors. The training consisted of innovative tactics and instructional techniques, and is designed to prepare officers to become trainers in rapid deployment intervention techniques. Officers were given the core instruction on the background, mission of first responders, history of active shooter incidents, commonalities, lessons learned, team responsibilities, priorities during active shooter incidents and principles to use in order to make quick decisions under stress. Officers were given the opportunity to demonstrate their newly acquired knowledge through teach-back exercises and practical scenarios. The Westland Police Department trains annually on active shooter response tactics, and works closely with the schools within our City to train inside the school buildings to enhance future responses if needed.
Our Officers are also trained in the ALICE Instructors Course. ALICE is the organization that is widely known throughout the nation as the standard for active shooter threats. Throughout the training, the members of the Department along with members of the Westland Fire Department and Wayne-Westland Community Schools learned and adapted the ALICE protocols for dealing with an Active Shooter threat. The Officers demonstrated the knowledge and competence to be certified as ALICE Instructors.
The department attended the Rescue Task Force (RTF) training as part of department mandated training. The course was designed to teach the four main methods of warm zone care during active violence incidents. This course exposed law enforcement, fire and rescue personnel, as well as other public safety partners to operating in a warm zone environment to provide point of wounding care to patients. Tactical emergency casualty care lessons were provided so that all participants can provide appropriate point of wounding care. Discussions included command and control considerations, unified command, common operating language, and essential on scene functions that must be performed for success. This course provided ongoing training ideas for their department as well as identifying some common barriers that must be overcome.
The Westland Police Department, in partnership with the Wayne-Westland Community Schools, will be implementing an Enhanced Crossing Guard School Safety Program. This plan will bring the number of crossing guards/safety personnel from 12 to 27. The program is designed to create additional crossing guard posts to multiple locations based on school location, student volume and determined need. There will be a modernized and structured training program that will include basic CPR, first aid, stranger danger, risk awareness, and active shooter awareness. “Wayne-Westland Community Schools has always made the safety of our students and staff our top priority. Our partnership with the City of Westland and its Police Department has always been a crucial element to giving our District the best possible tools and procedures for dealing with possible life-threatening situations”, said Superintendent Dr. John Dignan.
“The Westland Police Department realizes that the needs of the community are changing and we are preparing our personnel in cooperation with our partners in the city to meet those needs. We take all incidents involving the various Schools in Westland very seriously and appreciate our partnerships with the Wayne-Westland Community Schools, as well as the many other public, private and charter schools within our great city”, said Westland Mayor William R. Wild.
Students, parents, and community members are asked to report all suspicious or threatening activity to law enforcement and/or school district administration immediately. Information can also be shared using the OK2SAY hotline by calling 1-855-565-2729 or texting to 652729.
For more information, please call (734) 467-3200.