Record-Setting 8th Accreditation for Arvada Police

The Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) presented the Police Department with its 8th accreditation earlier this spring.

It also named Arvada as a Flagship agency for the second straight time as well as a Meritorious organization for the third straight time. 

Flagship Designation

A Flagship designation is presented to a law enforcement organization demonstrating compliance of CALEA’s standards in an exemplary manner. It also means the Arvada Police Department will serve as a resource to other agencies taking part in the accreditation process.  

During the recently completed CALEA conference, Arvada Police Department accreditation team members staffed a Flagship agency information display, answered questions from other conference attendees and provided copies of Arvada Police Department policies which could be used as models for other agencies.

The Arvada Police Department was also the first agency in Colorado to be designated as a Flagship agency and is one of only two within Colorado to attain that distinction.

Meritorious Honor

The Meritorious honor recognizes the Arvada Police Department for achieving and maintaining CALEA Accreditation for 15 or more continuous years. The department was first accredited in 1986. 

“Accreditation isn’t simply a certificate hanging on the wall. It’s an opportunity for our department to challenge itself to ensure we are implementing best practices in all areas to maximize our service to the community,” said Commander Kathy Foos who served as the accreditation manager overseeing the CALEA process throughout the most recent three year cycle. 

The Arvada Police Department is the first Colorado Police Department to receive its 8th accreditation through CALEA. The 2010 accreditation process differed from those in the past with the Department serving as a beta test site for a proposed streamlined accreditation process for CALEA.  

In December of last year, two CALEA assessors traveled to the police department for a twofold review.

First they examined the department’s directive system (the Rules & Procedures Manual, Operating Guidelines, General Orders, and Special Orders etc.) to determine if they were written in accord with best practices for a police department.

The second part of their inspection dealt with whether or not these practices were being followed in everyday operations. The department received very high marks on both counts.  

The streamlined process found the assessors reviewing more than 200 CALEA standards, less than half of a traditional on-site assessment, and spending a large portion of their two days interviewing police employees and hosting a public comment session.


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