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2017 Officer Wellness Finalist
In 2013, the Wisconsin Department of Justice’s Training and Standards Bureau (TSB) placed greater emphasis on Officer Wellness because of several painful events that occurred in numerous Wisconsin law enforcement agencies.
The TSB has subsequently added 34 hours of physical fitness to the recruit academy, to include an entrance and exit Physical Readiness Test. Physical fitness training sessions are held several times a week to ensure officers can handle the physical rigors of the academy and the job. The TSB also created a Physical Readiness Program and training guide for their recruits. This guide highlights and the importance of creating measurable, realistic goals as well as keeping a fitness journal to maintain progress.
The TSB has also added eight hours of preparatory training focused specifically on living a healthy lifestyle, covering topics such as: stress management, healthy diet and exercise, alcohol and drug use, maintaining healthy relationships, financial stability throughout an officer’s career, and suicide prevention.
In addition, TSB personnel have been trained as instructors in the Question, Persuade, and Refer (QPR) Suicide Prevention program. Since implementing the QPR program, the TSB, in cooperation with academies and law enforcement agencies have trained over 270 incumbent officers and over 600 law enforcement recruits in officer wellness and suicide prevention.