Public Safety Day: Keeping All Citizens and Communities Safe

LGW’s members represent various professional sectors throughout the region, but few encounter the issues of public safety on a day to day basis.
The goal of Public Safety Day is to take a deep dive into the challenges of policing in today’s environment, get hands-on skills experience and bring takeaways from public safety back to homes and offices. The 2018 Signature Class gathered at the Montgomery County Public Safety Training Academy for a closer look at keeping communities safe. 
The morning began with a panel titled:  Policing in Today’s Environment. The conversation was moderated by Darrell Darnell (’15), Senior Associate VP, Safety and Security, The George Washington University, featuring Chief J. Thomas Manger, Chief of Police, Montgomery County and Chief Peter Newsham, Metropolitan Police Department. Panelists discussed how they lead officers within their respective departments provided and a closer look at department policies and procedures. Officials engaged in a detailed question and answer session with the class allowing class members to ask questions without reservations, creating an open and honest dialogue about policing. 
The second portion of the day began with a lecture on Specialized Populations and & Public Safety featuring Nancy Ware, Former Director, Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency for the District of Columbia. Ms. Ware’s discussion tapped into the needs of individuals who are at a higher risk of negative interactions with public safety officers, including homeless or at-risk youth, and individuals with mental illness. Ms. Ware reminded the class that there are many sides to each interaction with public safety officers and while those in positions of power have a responsibility to keep communities safe, they also have an obligation to respect citizens of diverse experiences.
The remainder of the afternoon included interactive sessions led by a team of experts at the safety academy. Class members experienced first had training scenarios that public safety officers are required to complete including ground fighting, room clearing, and police/civilian interactions. These in the moment situations drove home how intense public safety can get and how quickly moments can escalate. 
“The breakout sessions were very instructive. I gained a further understanding of the training and experiences that law enforcement entails. The conversation only scratched the surface.” -Class of 2018 participant
By the end of the program day, it was clear that public safety is a role that extends beyond one office or position. It takes the commitment of officers who encounter danger on a daily basis, and it also requires a two-way conversation with the community that is ongoing and changing. 
“This has been my favorite day so far—substantive, engaging & interactive.”-Class of 2018 participant
Thank you to our event host, our panelists, and public safety experts.  Below are some pictures from the program day. 

Public Safety Day was held on Thursday, March 15, 2018.