Addressing Officer BWC Concerns and Acceptance

This webinar focused on addressing the challenges that agencies and officers can experience when initially implementing a BWC program, especially regarding officer concerns, questions, and hesitations. Panelists highlighted the importance of having officers directly involved in the initial processes when an agency is considering implementing BWCs. The webinar also demonstrated how BWCs can benefit officers in a variety of areas, including officer safety, validating the decision to use force, affecting and even reducing citizen complaints, and promoting the good work that officers perform every day. Several representatives from different agencies discussed their experiences with initial skepticism from their officers. They shared their efforts to educate the organization and gain officer buy-in. The webinar also included a police union attorney, who discussed what unions should be aware of and request from agencies establishing a BWC program. A community member also discussed how BWCs can increase trust and transparency and help the community better understand police operations.

Tom Woodmansee, Senior Advisor for BWC TTA, set the context for this webinar by providing a brief introduction to this topic and Dr. Janne Gaub provided an overview on research on officer perceptions.
Approaches to addressing officer concerns and obtaining officer acceptance were provided by:
  • Adam Bell, Sergeant, Greensboro Police Department, North Carolina
  • Ken Roske, Deputy Chief, Pasco Police Department, Washington
Sean Smoot, Director and Chief Counsel for the Police Benevolent & Protective Association of Illinois and the Police Benevolent Labor Committee, discussed the union’s perspective on BWCs.