San Juan County Sheriff’s Office accredited for highest professional standards of policing

Submitted by the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office

The San Juan County Sheriff’s Office has successfully completed a rigorous accreditation program that certifies it is operating under best practices and standards for law enforcement. The program is administered by the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs (WASPC) and involves an eight-phase process over several months.

“We are proud to be accredited by WASPC,” said Sheriff Eric Peter. “It means our office has achieved the highest professional standards for policing.”

Benefits of accreditation include administrative and operational effectiveness, fair recruitment and employment practices, better records management, improved use of technology, health and safety, training, codes of conduct and prisoner security, among other important law enforcement tasks.

“The San Juan County Sheriff’s Office has worked hard to obtain this achievement,” said Steven Strahan, WASPC executive director. “The community should be proud of local law enforcement for taking direct and tangible steps to earn the public’s confidence in their operations.” The certification is awarded for a four-year period when the re-accreditation process begins.

The Washington Legislature originally called for the development of standards and goals for law enforcement in 1976. WASPC was founded in 1963 and represents executive and top management personnel from law enforcement agencies statewide. With more than 900 members it includes the 39 elected county sheriffs, and 240 police chiefs, as well as the Washington State Patrol, the Washington Department of Corrections, and representatives of several federal agencies.