NHC Sheriff’s Office earns national accreditation

Posted August 10, 2015 at 9:01 am     Category: News ReleaseOtherSheriff

(New Hanover County)– New Hanover County Sheriff, Ed McMahon, is pleased to announce his agency has been awarded accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA), Inc.

At a news conference today, McMahon credited his office for beginning the lengthy process of accreditation approximately 3 years ago. “It is very gratifying to have an outside, independent Commission examine our agency and agree that we are conducting business according to industry best-practice. What better way to hold ourselves accountable.”

Considered the ‘international gold standard’ for law enforcement operations, CALEA certification demonstrates the sheriff’s office is using best practices in providing a high level of service to citizens.

The purpose of CALEA’s Accreditation Program is to improve the delivery of public safety services, primarily by: maintaining a body of standards, developed by public safety practitioners, covering a wide range of up-to-date public safety initiatives; establishing and administering an accreditation process; and recognizing professional excellence. Specifically, CALEA’s goals are to:

  • Strengthen crime prevention and control capabilities;
  • Formalize essential management procedures;
  • Establish fair and nondiscriminatory personnel practices;
  • Improve service delivery;
  • Solidify interagency cooperation and coordination; and
  • Increase community and staff confidence in the agency.

The accreditation program provides public safety agencies the opportunity to voluntarily demonstrate that they meet an established set of professional standards which require an agency to develop a comprehensive, well thought out, uniform set of written directives.  The program also requires a preparedness program be put in place—so an agency is ready to address natural or man-made critical incidents.  The accreditation process also strengthens an agency’s accountability, both within the agency and the community, through a continuum of standards that clearly define authority, performance, and responsibilities.

Accreditation from CALEA can limit an agency’s liability and risk exposure because it demonstrates that internationally recognized standards for law enforcement have been met, as verified by a team of independent outside CALEA-trained assessors.

With the certification, New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office joins only 5 other sheriff’s offices in the state in achieving the recognition.  The designation places the office in the top 5 percent of law enforcement agencies across the country.


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