This week, the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) selected the Washington State Patrol Aviation Section, the U.S. Navy Region Northwest, and the U. S. Coast Guard Sector Seattle as joint recipients of the Civilian Law Enforcement-Military Cooperation Award.
According to Arnold Daxe with IACP, “this award encourages civilian law enforcement and military officials to take advantage of each other’s skills, knowledge and resources and find common ground where they can support each other’s efforts”.
“This partnership has enhanced national security and led to greater public safety for the communities served by the WSP and our Navy and Coast Guard partners”, said Captain Mark Couey of the Patrol’s Special Operations Division.
This award recognizes these agencies for developing an innovative partnership to protect critical military assets, state highway infrastructure and the efficient flow of traffic on the highways and bridges near water transit lanes used by military vessels heading to and from the sea via the Puget Sound.
"The Puget Sound area is vast with very dense water traffic and vital resources to our nation. The capability this joint program has given the entire region is invaluable," said Captain Suzanne Englebert, U.S. Coast Guard, Commander Sector Seattle
In 2005, Navy Region Northwest sponsored a federal grant to purchase Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) and other high-tech surveillance equipment for two WSP airplanes. State Patrol pilots utilize these airplanes to support homeland security, traffic enforcement, and public safety missions including search and rescue.
"By sharing training and technology, the Navy, Coast Guard, and State Patrol are each better able to carry out our missions. I'm honored that our achievements are being recognized, but the real reward is in the increased security and safety our partnership has provided," said Rear Admiral James A. Symonds, Commander Navy Region Northwest.
The IACP is the world's oldest and largest nonprofit membership organization of police executives, with over 20,000 members in over 89 different countries. IACP's leadership consists of the operating chief executives of international, federal, state and local agencies of all sizes.
The winners of the Civilian Law Enforcement – Military Cooperation Award will be honored at the IACP 116th Annual Conference on October 6, 2009, in Denver, Colorado.