Police Officers Leaving the Profession; Enrollment Up at Law Enforcement Academy

Nov 30, 2017

The Iowa Law Enforcement Academy trained a record number of law enforcement personnel this year.

Director Judy Bradshaw says that’s because more Iowa law officers are leaving the profession after a relatively short time on duty. So law enforcement agencies are sending more and more new recruits to the academy for training.

"How do I thrive as a law enforcement officer?" ILEA Dir. Judy Bradshaw

Bradshaw was a career police officer with the Des Moines Police Department for 34 years.

“You're not seeing those numbers of folks staying for that long,” Bradshaw said. “Some are getting into the profession and we're finding that seven to eight to 10 year time frame and they're leaving the profession.”

A new program called Blue Courage focuses on officer resilience.

“How do I not just survive within my career but how do I thrive as a law enforcement officer in my career,” Bradshaw said.  “How to recognize burnout, and what are the signs of that kind of anguish and when you need  to ask for help.”

The Academy wants to create a new Community Outreach Instructor position to address crisis interventi

"We can't really keep up with it." Judy Bradshaw

on, mental health training, and officer resilience.

Meanwhile, the academy trained a record 11,173 law enforcement personnel this year and many classes are full.

“We can't really keep up with it,” Bradshaw said. “We're limited by our resources.”

Bradshaw presented the ILA’s budget request to Governor Reynolds and her advisors.