Chaplaincy program to build relationships with law enforcement, community members
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
HUNTINGTON -- The City of Huntington and the Huntington Police Department announce a new volunteer chaplaincy program to build relationships between the faith-based community and law enforcement and provide support and resources to officers and community members during critical incidents.
The Huntington Police Department Chaplaincy Program (HPDCP) is in addition to the Compass Program, which also has been established to support officers' mental and physical health.
"Our police officers are engaged in a highly-stressful occupation, and we've recognized the importance of providing them with the support to assist with their mental and physical well-being," Mayor Steve Williams said. "The Chaplaincy Program will address the spiritual needs of our officers if they so desire."
Huntington Police Chief Phil Watkins said he envisions a team of chaplains who will rotate on a monthly basis to proactively interact with members of the Police Department. Chaplains will be involved in activities such as officer ride-alongs and roll calls, which promote the building of relationships with the officers.
"The chaplains will also be available to respond to the scenes of critical incidents where they can provide support to both officers and the community members who have either been the victim of or witnessed a traumatic event," Watkins said. "I see this as another avenue for building relationships between the police department and the community."
The program will offer a free, four-day law enforcement training program Nov. 6-9 at the Huntington Police Department. This training will be a prerequisite for those interested in being a part of the HPD Chaplaincy Program.
All interested parties from the Tri-State are invited to participate in the training, as the goal is to provide it to anyone interested in supporting their local law enforcement agency.
If you are interested in the HPD's Chaplain Program and/or the free law enforcement training program, please visit the Huntington Police Department's website at hpdwv.com or call