BJA's Justice Today
May 2010
In the Spotlight

BJA Honors Our Nation's Law Enforcement Officers
In honor of National Police Week, May 9–15, BJA is pleased to feature new and ongoing efforts to honor America's law enforcement officers and efforts to improve officer safety and wellness.

Public Safety Officer Medal of Valor logoEvery day, public safety officers risk their lives to protect America's citizens and communities. To honor that commitment, Congress passed The Public Safety Officer Medal of Valor Act of 2001, which created the Public Safety Officer Medal of Valor, a program which BJA administers. The Medal of Valor is the highest national award for valor by a public safety officer who has been nominated by the chief executive of his or her agency. The medal is awarded annually by the President to public safety officers who have exhibited exceptional courage, regardless of personal safety, in the attempt to save or protect human life. The nomination period for the Medal of Valor opens May 28, 2010. More

BJA also is partnering with the International Association of Chiefs of Police's Division of State Associations of Chiefs of Police (SACOP) to examine line-of-duty injuries. The object of the examination is to offer policy and best practice recommendations for the prevention of injuries and officer safety overall.

Join Us In Remembering NYPD Officer Edward Byrne.
News You Can Use

Apply Now for Funding to Purchase Bulletproof Vests
The Bulletproof Vest Partnership (BVP) Program is currently accepting applications for FY 2010 funds. Applications can be submitted via the BVP web site at through June 1, 2010. Questions regarding the BVP Program or the current application process should be directed to the BVP Help Desk at 1–877–758–3787 or via e-mail at

BJA Offers Officer Suicide Prevention Program
BJA, in partnership with the Florida Regional Community Policing Institute, offers a law enforcement officer suicide prevention training program. This program is designed to bring awareness to the issue and offer approaches for intervention to officers under stress and/or with wellness concerns. For additional information, go to the In Harm's Way web site at

BJA/FBI Officer Safety Pocket Guides Available
BJA and the FBI jointly developed the Take A.I.M. [Awareness, Image, Mindset] brochure. Based on interviews of incarcerated subjects convicted for either killing or seriously assaulting a police officer, Take A.I.M. helps officers to identify situational and behavioral triggers that jeopardize their safety. Request copies at:

Grants and Funding

BJA has released the following solicitations:

For other funding opportunities, please go to:

Public Safety Officers' Benefits (PSOB) Program
Enacted in 1976, the Public Safety Officers' Benefits (PSOB) Program provides death, disability, and education benefits to those eligible for the program. For details regarding these federal benefits for law enforcement officers, firefighters, and first responders killed or catastrophically disabled in the line of duty, call the PSOB Office toll-free at 888–744–6513 or 202–307–0635, or visit the PSOB web site.
Did You Know?

According to the Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, "2009 was a tale of two trends in law enforcement fatalities in the United States." Data show that "total officer deaths declined nearly 16 percent, from 138 in 2008 to 116 in 2009. That is the fewest line-of-duty deaths since 1959, when there were 109. The 2009 reduction was driven largely by a steep drop in traffic-related deaths. After reaching a record high of 84 in 2007, traffic-related fatalities have fallen by 39 percent over the past two years. Still, for the 12th year in a row, more officers died in traffic-related incidents in 2009 than from any other single cause of death. The encouraging news on traffic fatalities is offset by a disturbing rise in the number of officers shot and killed in 2009. Firearms-related fatalities increased 22 percent, to 49 in 2009, from 40 in 2008." (Source: National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, 2009 End of Year Fatality Report)

Featured Program

Officer safety is a top priority for Attorney General Holder and the entire Department of Justice. To prevent "blue-on-blue" incidents and to promote coordination of enforcement efforts, BJA encourages federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies to consider RISSafe—a deconfliction program of the Regional Information Sharing System (RISS)—to prevent potential conflicts in law enforcement operations. RISSafe is the only national deconfliction system addressing federal, state, local, and tribal investigative activities. RISSafe is a database of planned law enforcement investigative and enforcement events, that identifies and alerts affected agencies of potential conflicts across agency and jurisdictional boundaries. Without this resource, law enforcement officers would be at risk of becoming involved in another agency's operations, potentially resulting in tragedy. More information is available at

RISS logo

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