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=Independence Sgt. Justin Hedlund, left, and Chief Bob Mason pose with the department’s re-accreditation award at the Oregon Association of Police Chiefs annual conference.

INDEPENDENCE — The Independence Police Department received its second consecutive award of law enforcement accreditation at the recent Oregon Association Chiefs of Police annual conference.

“Accreditation means that an agency, their operations, management, policies and procedures, meet the best practices the industry has to offer,” said Ed Boyd, executive director, Oregon Accreditation Alliance in a news release. “The accreditation process in general is a progressive and contemporary way of helping law enforcement agencies evaluate and improve their overall performance, and provides formal and professional recognition that an organization meets or exceeds best practice expectations of service and quality in the profession.”

There are more than 400 requirements within the 104 professional standards agencies must meet to be accredited.

Accredited agencies are re-evaluated every three years.

“Anytime the chief executive officer of an organization invites an outside third party into their department to review and inspect everything associated with their operations and render an opinion as to whether they meet a set of best practice standards for a given profession, that, by itself, shows commitment, transparency and dedication to excellence,” Boyd said. 

While the decision to attempt the accreditation process is with the chief, the process is an agency-wide effort.

The Oregon Accreditation Alliance extended special recognition to Accreditation Manager Sgt. Justin Hedlund.

Accreditation managers are the “point people who make it happen,” Boyd said.

The Oregon Accreditation Alliance recognized Hedlund, “for his outstanding work in preparing the Independence Police Department for their re-accreditation assessment.”

About the Oregon Accreditation Alliance

The Oregon Accreditation Alliance provides professional standards for law enforcement and 911/communications agencies in Oregon and Alaska.

The OAA has been in existence since 2001 and is governed by the Oregon Accreditation Alliance Board of Directors and is sponsored by the Oregon Association Chiefs of Police, the Oregon State Sheriffs Association and the Oregon Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials.

There are currently 49 law enforcement and 911 agencies that hold accredited status through the OAA.

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