Over the last 20 years, literally thousands of local police officers have attended a 40-hour basic truck enforcement school. Some have attended the ITEA 40-hour Basic Truck Enforcement class. However, there are other places local police officers can be trained in basic truck enforcement.
Here’s the rub: the quality of their training pales in comparison to the ITEA. In fact, there is no comparison. The “other classes” may be certified by the Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board, but that does not guarantee they are getting the best, most well-rounded training.
It’s a big, complicated law, and the reality is no 40-hour class can teach police officers everything they need to know. That’s why the ITEA offers certification training.
The ITEA 8-hour certification training is designed for police officers who received their basic 40-hour training from an organization other than the ITEA. Here is the typical progression of an officer who attends a non-ITEA basic truck school:
- Attends a 40-hour basic class (not the ITEA). sort of good
- Leaves the class utterly confused. bad
- Begins doing enforcement on his own…with no authoritative peer support. bad
- Starts writing tickets he thinks are proper, but are most likely incorrect. bad
- Learns incorrect interpretations of the law from other officers. bad
- Receives complaints from the industry. bad
- Loses cases in court. bad
- Joins the ITEA and learns the right way. Obtains on-going training. Has access to up-to-date resources and subject matter experts. good
It sounds harsh, but it’s true. If the ITEA did not have dozens of examples of redeemed truck officers who went through this exact process, then it would remain unsaid. It’s destructive. It hurts the officer and the perception of law enforcement. The goal of the ITEA is to intervene with truck officers after #1, skip #2 thru #7, and land at #8. The best way to make sure non-ITEA trained truck officers are on the truck enforcement level is to have them certified by the ITEA.
Put your mouth where your money is.
Check out our list of ITEA certified officers. Have you had contact with a local truck officer who is not on this list? If so, call the Chief of Police and respectfully demand he or she enroll sign their officers up for the next 8-hour certification class. It’s only $25, which includes one year’s membership to the ITEA. Be the squeaky wheel. Follow up to make sure it gets done.
Guess what? You are the taxpayer who funds their training. You deserve better than OK. You deserve exemplary.