The Command Post Volume 40 - Spring Edition

Featuring articles from Det. Jeff Thompson, Samuel A. Farina, Tom Hart, Sergeant Sally Penzer, and more.

Published on Mar 20, 2018

Greetings! The majority of the CCII members reside in Ontario and for us, it’s been a long and cold winter. I have found that to survive the winter you must either embrace it, or go south. My wife and I did both. I have a number of matters worth mentioning in my message for this issue of the Command Post.

Firstly, I am pleased to advise you that Jon Beninger has joined the CCII Advisory Board. Jon is the Provincial Coordinator for the Crisis Negotiator Program and Emergency Response Team, at the Ontario Correctional Services College. Jon has been a negotiator for 14 years and brings a great deal of knowledge and experience to the Advisory Board (More on Jon in the Command Post).

Secondly and equally important, is the addition of two co-instructors to the Crisis Negotiators course. The core business of CCII is to instruct and qualify police officers in Crisis Negotiation and Major Incident Command by providing quality course training material and experienced instructors, allowing the hosting police service to receive their Ministry accreditation. CCII is pleased to have Det. Kate Harrison and Detective Inspector Monique Rollin, co-instruct the Crisis Negotiators course. Crisis negotiation and major incident command requires quality and consistent course training standards and equally important are the instructors. They must have the knowledge, skill and depth of experience to effectively instruct police officers in this challenging, demanding and dynamic area of policing.

Det. Kate Harrison recently retired from Durham Regional Police Service, with 14 years as an active crisis negotiator and 30 years of policing. Kate co-instructed with me at the CCII crisis negotiators course hosted by the Toronto Police ETF, and I must say, it was a privilege for both Kate and I to instruct the ETF. They are without doubt one of North America’s most skilled tactical teams.

Detective Inspector Monique Rollin is a member of the Sault Ste. Marie Police Service. Monique has a great deal of experience as a crisis negotiator, team leader and team training coordinator, and is an active incident commander. Monique co-instructed with me at the CCII crisis negotiators course hosted by the Greater Sudbury Police Service, which also included other police services in central northern Ontario area. We received great feedback from both courses and I am grateful for Kate and Monique’s exceptional contribution.

Another addition to the CCII training team is Amy Meeks. Amy is the Communication Trainer for the Waterloo Regional Police Service, with 15 years experience as a Scribe for the WRPS Major Incident Command Team. Amy did an excellent job instructing members of the Greater Sudbury Police Service. I am grateful for her positive and professional contribution.

The OACP established the Incident Response– Education, Training and Professional Development Best Practice Guidelines SubCommittee, to review and recommend the training standards for all levels of Incident Command. CCII fully supports the great efforts which the committee has done so far. It is so important that the province have current, quality and consistent training standards. Having said that, CCII supports the larger police services in delivering quality training in major incident command, from first responders to the senior commanders.

I am pleased to say, that the annual CCII Fall Seminar in November was a tremendous success. The CCII fall seminar continues to build on its success, which is largely due to the quality guest speakers, excellent location and venue. The case studies presented demonstrated the enormous, skill, competence and expertise of crisis negotiation and major incident command, managing some very difficult and stressful events throughout the province.

Among the quality speakers, was the CCII Life Time Achievement Award presented to Dr. Peter Collins. Dr. Collins is the Operational Forensic Psychiatrist for the Ontario Provincial Police. Dr. Collins has been supporting major incident commanders and crisis negotiators, for the OPP, Toronto ETF and many other police services for over 25 years. It was a pleasure and privilege to present Dr. Collins with the CCII Life Time Achievement Award. Superintendent Chris Newton of the London Police Service and Inspector Tim Crone of the Toronto Police Service said a few words expressing their sincere appreciation of the tremendous support Dr. Collins has and continues to provide their service. Read more about Dr. Collins in my “lunch with Peter” article.

The CCII Fall Seminar will again be held at the Double Tree Hotel in Niagara Falls, November 5 to 7, 2018. It is a great location and an excellent venue. I am pleased to say, that CCII has not increased the cost for the annual fall seminar in 7 years and continues to improve the quality of the seminar, which is indicative of the continuing increase in attendance and positive feedback. Last year was the highest turn out so far, with nearly 190 participants.

I want to express my sincere thanks to the guest speakers and a special thanks to Sam Farina, President of the New York association of Hostage Negotiators, which equally contributed to its’ great success.

CCII continues to make improvements to the courses and the website. CCII recently added a testimonial tab on the website. I encourage you to check it out and if you would like to add a comment, please email me. You will also see that the Sarnia Police Service will be hosting a Crisis Negotiators course in April.

A great training opportunity is the New York Association of Hostage Negotiators (NYAHN) annual spring conference, held on May 23 to 25, 2018 at the Holiday Inn Downtown, Rochester N.Y. The conference will provide the negotiator with real world case studies from New York city, Illinois, Australia and Canada. This is an excellent training opportunity at a very good price, and a great chance to professionally network with our brothers and sisters south of the border. I encourage you to attend.

I trust you will enjoy this issue of the Command Post. I have added interesting articles from fellow crisis negotiator, Sergeant Sally Penzer of the St. Louis Police Department, part two of the two part article prepared by Jeff Thompson, Ph.D., and Sam Farina President of the New York Association of Hostage Negotiators. Thanks Sally, Jeff and Sam for sharing your knowledge and experiences.

CCII strongly supports sharing ideas, experiences, strategies and techniques that have worked or failed. It’s all about learning. It’s a skill not an applied science, that requires constant training to remain skilled, proficient and to be held accountable to yourself, your team members and your service.


Tom Hart


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