Researching Moral Injury in Law Enforcement

EDITORS NOTE: The Law Enforcement Survival Institute was approached by The University of Colorado Colorado Springs School of Public Affairs about promoting a new research project investigating the concept of moral injury within law enforcement.  The findings from this project entitled: Advancing Officer Wellness: A Study of On-Duty Experiences and their Impacts among Law Enforcement Professionals, can be used to raise awareness of officer’s experiences and to develop programming that supports officer wellness. The Law Enforcement Survival Institute wholeheartedly supports this very interesting research and we encourage you to investigate further, join the project, and help us spread the word to others.
Here’s some information to get you started and you can connect with the links below:

Purpose Statement: In light of the stresses of police work, recent years have brought heightened attention to the tolls of the job on individual officers. These can include illness, mental and behavioral health challenges, and even suicide. There is thus a strong push for proactive efforts to advance health, wellness, and resilience among officers. This study seeks to support and advance those efforts.

Background: Policing professionals face traumatic and morally injurious events in the line of duty. the effects of trauma and moral injury can include posttraumatic stress, depression, anxiety, suicidality, substance misuse, spiritual and religious struggle, and more. This study is an important step in bolstering resilience among those working in the policing profession. Findings can be used to raise awareness of officer’s experiences and to develop programming that supports officer wellness…

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Choosing and Change

Choosing and Change by new CopsAlive Contributor
Tammy Featherstone, Sgt. (retired)

Growing up in a strict, conservative, Southern Baptist home came with many challenges. In addition, I was not a conventional girl. I loved being outdoors, playing sports and “rough housing”. I realized early on I didn’t view things the same way my parents did. My father was misogynistic and reminded my sister and I, more frequently than I care to remember, that he was the “head of the house”. I challenged my father quite a bit growing up. It didn’t work out so well for me. I can’t explain the feeling of being a small child and being hit by a grown man.

There were constant conflicts… Continue reading

Rest in Peace Morty Dzikansky

Mordecai Dzikansky
           1962-2022

I received very sad news today that my friend, retired NYPD Detective First Grade, Mordecai Dzikansky has died suddenly of a heart attack. Morty was my friend, my colleague, my hero and a damn good cop.

Morty served in the NYPD for twenty-five years and he was a Hero, an NYPD Detective First Grade, a Husband, a Father, an Author, a Teacher, a Cop’s cop and my Friend.

He is survived by his wife Meryl and their three children Zachary, Jake, Talia

We were supposed to be teaching together at the International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association (ILEETA) conference this week but other priorities had pulled both of us apart and in different directions, so that neither of us were able to attend the conference.

He was together with his family celebrating the sacred Jewish holiday of Purim when he died.

He was the author of two books: The well known… Terrorist Cop: The NYPD Jewish Cop Who Traveled the World to Stop Terrorists, 2010 and his textbook on terrorism investigations Terrorist Suicide Bombings: Attack Interdiction, Mitigation, and Response by Mordecai Dzikansky, Gil Kleiman, et al. 2011

He worked with us at The Law Enforcement Survival Institute and was very active in trying to help other law enforcement professionals avoid, or mitigate, the traumas and hidden dangers of our profession. He suffered from many of these himself.

As a NYPD Manhattan South Homicide Detective on September 11, 2001, when terrorists flew planes into the World Trade Center in New York City, Morty’s team of detectives were immediately dispatched to what would eventually be called Ground Zero to begin investigations. Continue reading

What’s New at the Law Enforcement Survival Institute?

What’s New at LESI?

Pre-Recorded, Virtual, Blended and In-Person Training
Armor Your Self™ Facilitator Program
Executive Coaching and Executive Mastermind Groups
Wellness Driven Community Policing program
Resilience Pilot Project for every agency!
Tactical Resilience™ and Ethical Policing Project (TREPP)

We believe:
• Resilient Police Officers Promote Healthy Police Agencies
• Healthy Police Agencies Promote Resilient Communities
• Resilient Communities Promote Healthy Police Officers

If we don’t take care of our people, they won’t be able to take care of THE PEOPLE!

The Law Enforcement Survival Institute (LESI) is an assessment, consulting and training organization. We work with law-enforcement professionals and other first responders and their organizations who want to be at their best. Our focus is wellness and resilience.

We offer custom made solutions using a Consultative-Training/Assessment* process to help your… Continue reading

Our Contribution to Police Reform

Affecting Social Change In The Way We Train Police Officers

Current news reports are increasingly rife with stories about communities clashing with their police departments as a result of excessive force and police misconduct. At the same time, law enforcement agencies are concerned with PTSD, police officer suicides, increased incidence of illnesses amongst police officers, lower than normal life expectancy, depression, domestic violence, alcohol and drug abuse and ethical compromise.

All these problems stem from the same root causes: A career in law enforcement presents challenges to the human spirit, and the pressures of the career deplete officers in a way that is unique to law enforcement.

Officers experiences endless exposure to danger, stress and tragedy, which depletes their reserves of idealism, motivation and personal resilience. Without effective ways to replenish the human spirit, build resilience and restore ethical clarity, it is possible to reach a state of personal “overdraft” or,… Continue reading

LESI Wellness Panel Discussion

The Law Enforcement Survival Institute (LESI) invites you to view our wellness panel discussion that was streamed live online on April 23, 2020.

This wellness and resilience information is suitable for all first responders and your family members. We will have a live audience and will record it for others to watch, later for free, on the CopsAlive.com YouTube channel.

With all that is happening in the world today maintaining your health and wellness is of paramount importance. Law enforcement professionals, other first responders and members of the military are normally faced with the most challenging situations in the world and now with a new global pandemic to face your personal wellness is mission critical.

OUR PANELISTS
John Marx, CPP
Law Enforcement Chaplain Cary Friedman
NYPD Detective First Grade (Ret.) Mordecai Z. Dzikansky
Sgt. Clarke Paris, LVMPD (ret.)
Tracie Paris, RN, BSN
Lois James, Ph.D.
Stephen James, Ph.D.

OUR MODERATOR
Christie Ward, CSP


Time: Duration 129 minutes

Who: All First Responders and Your Family Members

What: Online discussion of everyday wellness challenges and resilience strategies

INFORMATION ABOUT OUR PANELISTS:… Continue reading

Prevent Law Enforcement Suicides!

It is National Suicide Prevention Week and Month. There are lots of resources out there to help you. Now is a time to act!

Last year was the first year that the number of reported law enforcement suicides exceeded the number of Line of Duty Deaths. It’s happening again this year.

As of September 9, 2019 Blue H.E.L.P. has verified 142 suicides while the NLEOMF has only reported 83 Line of Duty Deaths.

So what are you willing to do to stop this problem from happening at your agency?

Do you have a suicide prevention program in your agency?

Well, you no longer have an excuse for not having a program. With a video produced by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), the Working Minds Program and the Carson J Spencer Foundation, and our CopsAlive.com roll call discussion guide you can create a ready made program the moment you finish reading this page.

Create your own police suicide prevention training… Continue reading

Resilience in Law Enforcement

One of your peers is suffering; maybe you are too! They want to be good at their job and actually make the world a better place. However, one too many dead baby calls, and too many months on the night shift with all the drunks and people shoving their cell phones in your face and your partner has had enough. Of course all of this comes on top of the increased violence in your area and the unending tide of gang members plying their drug trade in your neighborhood and your peers are telling you to “suck it up” and “shake it off” — but you can’t. It’s bad enough that work is unending trauma and tragedy, but your spouse is nagging you about not being able to cover the bills this month and why you can’t make your kids recital tomorrow afternoon. Maybe you have experienced some of this too? So what do you tell your partner about why it’s important to take care of yourself? How do you endure this job until retirement and not eat your gun first?

The recent surge of police officer suicides should be a red flag to what is happening within our profession. We need to deal with law enforcement suicide as a symptom of something much more complex and insidious that is eroding our people from within. We spend lots and lots of money on technology to improve policing while at the same time forgetting that law enforcement is a people business. If we don’t take care of our people, they won’t be able to take care of THE PEOPLE!

Police resilience is about making sure… Continue reading

Armor Your Self™ 2019 Workshops

Have you read the 458 page softcover resilience textbook: Armor Your Self: How To Survive A Career In Law Enforcement and want to learn more?

We are bringing our Armor Your Self™ workshops to a city near you:

Armor Your Self™ 2019 Preliminary Spring Workshop Calendar includes workshops in Daytona Beach, Florida; Columbus, Ohio; Lansing, Michigan; Omaha, Nebraska; Pueblo, Colorado; Glendale, Arizona and one hosted by the Louisiana State Police.

To learn more or register for one of these workshops visit: https://armoryourself.com/register/

The Armor Your Self™ project is a powerful concept that will begin building the foundations of law enforcement health and wellness for your personnel, your families and for your organization.

The program is taught as a Resilience Research Learning Laboratory with all the participants researching, discussing and learning information that is specific, and important to them.

Each participant receives a copy of the 458 page softcover resilience textbook: Armor Your Self: How To Survive A Career In Law Enforcement by John Marx (a $24.95 value).

Participants will find the tools they need to recognize the symptoms of the toxic effects… Continue reading

CopsAlive Hosts 2019 TREPP Webcasts

John Marx and Chaplain Cary A. Friedman invite you to join us for a new online discussion LIVE webcast series about modern policing as part of our Tactical Resilience™ & Ethical Policing Project.

We want to ignite a thoughtful, and regular, discussion about issues critical to the success of modern policing and we want to involve you!

To that end we are planning regular LIVE webcasts that will last about an hour. They will involve a little discussion, a little training and a few guests along the way.

Please watch our welcome video:

Our sessions will be held regularly, approximately once a month, usually on a Wednesday at Noon Eastern Time.

Space will be limited to the first 100 people who register in advance.

Register here: https://tacticalresilience.org/online-training/

Each session will be recorded and posted on our CopsAlive YouTube Channel after the event

Please reach out by email or online and send us your thoughts before the webinar and we will incorporate them into the discussion… Continue reading