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Law Enforcement Today by Jim McNeff

Jim McNeff worked in military and civilian law enforcement for thirty-one years. He retired as a police lieutenant with the Fountain Valley Police Department in Orange County, California. He currently serves as the editor-in-chief with Law Enforcement Today. Jim holds a Bachelor of Science degree in criminal justice from Southwest University and graduated from the “Sherman Block Supervisory Leadership Institute” as well as the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) course, “Leadership in Police Organizations.” He authored “The Spirit behind Badge 145” and “Justice Revealed.” He has been a member of PORAC (Peace Officer Research Association of California) since 1985. You can contact him at editor@lawenforcementtoday.com.

Jim McNeff
Editor-in-Chief, Law Enforcement Today
www.lawenforcementtoday.com
Police Lieutenant (Ret.)

Law Enforcement Today is a source of information regarding matters that are important to peace officers and their families. We bring relevant news and exclusive commentary that will inform and educate our reading audience.

LET delivers easily consumable articles from our website www.lawenforcementtoday.com and social media platforms. Yet while delivering enticing journalism, the interaction with our reading audience is ongoing due to a two-way exchange of information.

Law Enforcement Today hosts a radio show/podcast that earnestly captivates listeners with riveting dialogue and interviews. Our guests share incredible stories that occurred during their professional journey in police work. As a result, the show is sure to prod a variety of emotions that include laughter, sadness, and anger at times, since each sentiment is the reality of our expedition. You will not be disappointed when you tune in at www.lawenforcementtoday.com/let-radio/.

Moreover, the hub of Law Enforcement Today consists of career cops with a century of real world experience; or institutional knowledge, as I like to refer to it. Furthermore, our battalion of writers are primarily active duty cops, retired peace officers, spouses, and clinicians serving the police profession from all over the country. As a result, if there is a topic related to law enforcement, we write about it.

Since we are primarily practitioners, we leave most of the theoretical dialogue to the academic world. However, while the majority of our writings are pragmatic, we have subject matter experts who are leaders in their field of education as well. Consequently, we seek to influence others with our eclectic combination of experience, education, and training. And we do it from the perspective of cops, family members, and pro-police citizens who support the Thin Blue Line.

LET would be thrilled to have you connect with our Blue Family through our website www.lawenforcetoday.com, social media platforms by the same name, and our online radio show/podcast www.lawenforcementtoday.com/let-radio/.

Finally, we also ask that you support partners like Galls; not just because they back the blue, but also since they have provided first responders with quality products for over fifty years!

Above all else, be safe and love your neighbor as yourself … unless he’s involved in criminal activity. Then call your local police department or county sheriff.

Best Regards,

Jim

Fentanyl: Challenges as a First Responder & How to Protect Yourself

When you decide on a career as a first responder, be it police, fire, or medic, you understand the many dangers associated with this calling. Today there is a new danger to add to the list: Fentanyl. Fentanyl is a synthetic drug that is manufactured primarily in China and Mexico, and it is being used as an adulterant in other controlled substances such as heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine. It is also being used in counterfeit pharmaceutical products, such as tablets that mimic oxycodone, hydrocodone, and alprazolam.  In Ohio, there have been reports of it being used as an adulterant in marijuana as well.

The challenge with Fentanyl is that it is 50-100 times more potent than morphine and can be absorbed into the body by injection, oral ingestion, contact with mucous membranes, inhalation, and via transdermal transmission. Due to the many ways fentanyl can be absorbed into the body, accidental exposure by first responders is a possibility.

As with any new challenge facing first responders, agency responses can range from a “wait and see what happens” attitude, to going overboard and creating policy and procedures that cover all the bases but are operationally not practical.

The key to protecting yourself against this trend or any other developing issue is to educate yourself on the problem and learn how to protect you and your agency. Here are some great resources to help you get started:

https://youtu.be/9Xi4A8S23Xo

https://www.fentanylsafety.com/

https://www.dea.gov/druginfo/Fentanyl_BriefingGuideforFirstResponders_June2017.pdf

In the DEA Fentanyl Briefing document, they recommend several levels of PPE when dealing with Fentanyl. For first responders who may encounter fentanyl or fentanyl-related substances, an individual (personal) PPE Kit should be maintained. This kit should include:

  • Nitrile Gloves
  • N-95 dust masks
  • Sturdy eye protection
  • Paper coveralls – shoe covers
  • Naloxone Injector(s)

One issue that agencies are encountering is that under OSHA guidelines, the N-95 dust mask requires a yearly seal test fitting for each person issued a mask. This will not be an issue for smaller agencies, but keeping documentation for large agencies is an additional administrative task that will need to be assigned to someone in your organization.

So where do you go from here? If you are a first responder, educate yourself on the issue so that when you encounter Fentanyl in the field, you will know how to respond. If you are at the command level in your organization, it is time to review your policy and procedures to make sure this new threat is being addressed. You can start by asking yourself these questions:

  • Do my employees have the proper PPE if they encounter Fentanyl in the field?
  • Do we need to change the way we package and store suspected fentanyl or drugs adulterated with fentanyl, when they are collected as evidence?
  • Are support personnel such as crime scene technicians and evidence custodians equipped and trained to handle fentanyl?

If you have not developed policy or procedures to address this issue, this will get you started.

Let those of us who have answered the call to be first responders make sure we are protecting ourselves and the people who work for us by making sure we are prepared for an encounter with Fentanyl.

Officer Ashley Smith: You only have ONE Body!

 

Hey y’all, Officer Ashley Smith here with Galls. I’d like to quickly introduce myself; I am a Police Officer in Onondaga County NY where I have over 9 years of Law Enforcement Experience as a Patrol Officer and over 8 Years experience as a Personal Trainer. Between spending my mornings at the gym, prepping my meals for the week, suiting up and going out on Patrol, handling complaints, investigating major crimes, conducting traffic stops, visiting the children at the local schools, and spending time with my family & friends…I have seen a lot and heard a lot and I am here to offer you some tips on how to live a better, healthier, happier life.

As LEO’s we live very hectic, fast paced, high stress, busy lives and all because we LOVE what we do but we also need to pay the bills right? We spend money on clothes to wear ON our bodies, hair products to put ON our hair, lotion to put ON our skin. We eat take-out, we drink alcohol, we get coffee/energy drinks to keep us awake just to then need a sleeping aid at night. We do all of this daily for the OUTSIDES of our bodies, but what do we do to take care of the INSIDE of our bodies? When you think about it, not much to be honest, and that is not good!! We are around toxins daily whether it be in the air we breathe, in the things we ingest or the people we come into contact with. YOU ONLY HAVE ONE BODY, not two, or three, we aren’t cats with nine lives and we need to learn how to take care of ourselves and worship our bodies like the temples they are!

This happens when you make a plan, a plan to start taking care of the inside of your body just as good if not BETTER than you do the outside. A healthy body is a happy & healthy mind! It’s easy to start; simply choosing healthier food options, being active, lowering the caffeine/alcohol intake, looking at alternatives to prescription medications, striving for 6-8 hours’ sleep, and slowing down will ALL help your body to become the best, well-oiled machine it can be! So ladies & gentlemen, I CHALLENGE YOU to start making a conscious step towards making your body just a little bit better; choose ONE thing you can work on and go FULL FORCE on it. I’ll be checking back in with y’all soon, as well as dropping some of my own personal tips along the way!

LEO Love,

@Officerashleysmith