Deputies incorporate de-escalation skills

Published 12:10 am Wednesday, April 3, 2019

LAPLACE — Four St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff’s Office team members are charged with improving community relations and enhancing de-escalation skills for dealing with dangerous situations.

Cpl. Larry Williams, Cpl. Chris Crawford, Deputy Ira Marsalis and Sgt. Chasity Sanford attended classes in Leesburg, Fla., becoming certified instructors with Racial Intelligence Training and Engagement or RITE Academy.

They are now certified as cultural diversity trainers and are working with fellow officers.

The ultimate goal of RITE Academy, which specializes in cultural diversity training for law enforcement, is to improve relations between police and communities. Classes focused on diversity training, de-escalation communication and emotional and social intelligence.

Officers learn to gauge their emotional state so they do not react negatively, especially in potentially dangerous situations.

The officers learned techniques to improve their communication skills, enhance their mindfulness on and off the job, help de-escalate high pressure situations and enhance diversity and inclusion.

Williams, Crawford, Marsalis and Sanford are now charged with teaching colleagues these techniques on how to be conscious of their emotions and focus on how to improve reactions in various situations.