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FALL 2022 HYDRANT FLUSHING

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Click here for an interactive map of showing the hydrant flushing schedule. Goshen Utilities will start the fall hydrant flushing program beginning Monday October 11th, 2021, through Friday October 15th, weather permitting. From Monday, October 10 through Friday October 14, the... more

RAILROAD CROSSING CLOSURE: MAIN STREET

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Norfolk Southern will close the railroad crossing at Main Street, north of downtown, to make repairs on the tracks. The closure will begin on Tuesday, Oct. 4 and will extend through Friday, Oct. 7. more

CITY OF GOSHEN TO HOST INDIGENOUS PEOPLES DAY EVENT

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Goshen and its surrounding region has rich history as land of the Potawatomi and Miami nations. To honor Indigenous Peoples Day, the City of Goshen Community Relations Commission will provide an opportunity for residents of all ages to learn this history.  The CRC will host an Indigenous Peoples... more

Upcoming Events All »

Board of Works & Safety & Stormwater Board

Today, 2:00pm

To join the webinar, please copy and paste this link on your browser: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81801258378 Or call: (301) 715-8592 or 312 626 6799 Webinar ID: 847 4800 4365 Dial *9 to "raise hand" and speak during public comment

Downtown Goshen Economic Improvement District

Thursday, October 6, 2022, 7:30am

Community Relations Commission

Thursday, October 6, 2022, 7:00pm

About de escalation

Verbal Skills for De-Escalation

The first thing to know about de-escalation training is that the term itself is somewhat of a misnomer. De-escalation is an outcome, not one specific skill, but to get there our officers must employ a set of verbal—and sometimes physical—skills.

During training, we refer to ‘de-escalation’ as persuasion. Our goal is to persuade people to comply voluntarily with lawful commands. This is the goal of law enforcement across the country, and it’s the type of skill set used most at any given time. The Goshen Police Department encountered more than 30,000 people in 2019, with less than 50 incidents in which anything over compliant handcuffing was required. That means physical force was used just over .1 percent of the time. 

Our officers receive the persuasion class every year as part of training on officer/citizen interactions. We teach de-escalation as an outcome, and that persuasion is an integration of communication combined with physical tactics when necessary. During training, our officers learn to recognize what kind of situation they are responding to and when a situation allows persuasion to be used as a means to de-escalate.

In any given scenario, the officer(s) and person (s) interacting all have influence on the zone between them. The influence can be:

  • Physical: We discuss knowing when distance is helping the issue, and recognizing when it is not. 
  • Temporal: Time allows us to decide between courses of action and pick the best choice. When you take away distance, you start to take away time. 
  • Psychological: Our officers learn the importance of communication of all types, including body language. We discuss the fact that most people, unwittingly or no, develop an impression of someone within 2-7 seconds of meeting them, whether any words were spoken or not.

We teach our officers to try to maintain influence in all three zones, which allows options for resolution. This may allow our officers time to establish contact, build rapport, and establish influence. If our officers they cannot establish rapport with an individual, they cannot influence the individual. 

The course also includes learning about:

  • The OODA loop: The four stage thought process that everyone MUST go through before acting.  Observe, Orient, Decide, Act
  • Recognition Primed Decision Making:  Decisions made in less than two seconds fall into this category.  Rapid decisions made based on previous experiences.
  • Five Universal Truths: A series of principles developed by police trainer Dr. Greg Thompson:
    • All people want to be treated with dignity and respect
    • All people want to be asked rather and told to do something
    • All people want to be told why they are being asked to do something
    • All people want to be given options rather than threats
    • All people want a second chance
  • Assessing the situation to determine what is needed. Is this a criminal issue and ultimately an arrest must be made? Is this a civil issue? Does a person need help?
  • Contaminated Thinking: a condition of thinking in which the person has lost the ability (either temporarily or permanently) to clearly, logically, and / or rationally understand their environment due to mental or physical illness, injury, intoxication, developmental disabilities, or any combination of the above (Azar-Dickens, 2017)

After an initial assessment of the situation and taking action, the officer must then evaluate if what they are doing is working. If it is not, they need to change tactics—all in the span of seconds or fractions of seconds. Sometimes an officer can do everything right and still not be able to influence someone.

In addition to the persuasion course, officers learn verbal skills in the traffic S.T.O.P.S. program.

With scenario training multiple times a year, officers are always emphasized the importance of correctly reading a situation, using verbal communication and proper tactics.  This is carried through our firearms and physical tactics training as well.