Members of the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office, Mendham Township Police Department, Mount Olive Police Department and Morris County Department of Corrections conducted training for Resiliency Program Officers in the New Jersey Resiliency Program for Law Enforcement, concluding on Friday, October 30, 2020.
Close to 53 attendees from various municipal and county agencies throughout Morris County attended the two-day training at the Morris County Public Safety Training Academy. In accordance with Attorney General Directive 2019-1, every state, county and local law enforcement agency is required to designate a Resiliency Program Officer, trained in the program and who will ultimately train their department members. The two-day course consisted of a mix of lectures and practical exercises.
The statewide program is intended to address the vital issue of helping officers cope with the emotional, mental and physical stress they endure in order to protect the residents of New Jersey. Highlights included a focus on officer wellness, peer support, QPR (Question Persuade Refer) principles, sustainability, four pillars of Resiliency Training to perpetuate resiliency within the agencies suicide prevention and partnering with COP2COP, a 24-hour confidential hotline service available to officers.
Instructors and members of the Morris County Master Resiliency Team included Mendham Township Police Chief Ross Johnson, Mount Olive Police Chief Stephen Beecher, Morris County Department of Corrections Lieutenant Andrew Bileci, MCPO Sergeant Mark Castellano and MCPO Detective Supervisor Patrick LaGuerre, and COP2COP Director Cherie Castellano and peer counselor Corporal John Rawley (STPD Ret.). Collectively, the Morris County Master Resiliency Team has over 115 years of law enforcement service, and a combination of municipal, county and corrections backgrounds varying experience that enhanced the training.
Additionally, New Jersey State Police Retired Captain David Leonardis of the NJOAG conducted opening remarks.
Director Castellano presented various blocks of instructions and provided guidance on how the program should be implemented.
Sergeant Castellano administered the Oath of Service to all of the attendees.
Morris County continues to lead the state in compliance with the Attorney General Directives and initiatives.
Acting Prosecutor Carroll said, “Law enforcement puts their lives on the line to protect our residents. The COVID-19 pandemic has also greatly increased the risk to our first responder personnel, further intensifying the job’s inherent high degree of stress and trauma. We owe it to our officers to provide them the support structure and resources they need so they don’t have to endure these risks in silence.”
The COP2COP line is available at 1-866-COP-2COP (267-2267).
Inquiries concerning this press release should be directed to Public Information Officer Meghan Knab at [email protected] or by phone at 973-829-8159.