New Model Policies Available!

The following documents are now available from the IACP National Law Enforcement Policy Center:

  • Active Shooter (formerly Rapid Response and Deployment) Policy and Paper Update (Volume VI) – these updated documents focus on the concept of rapid response in active shooter situations, rather than waiting for SWAT or other specialized personnel to arrive.
    • Active shootings, such as those at Columbine High School, Sandy Hook Elementary School, and the theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado, inflict casualties in rapid order, generally before officers or other emergency responders can even be summoned. In spite of this logistical disadvantage, it has been recognized that even one or two armed officers can make a difference in the outcome of active shootings by taking swift but calculated individual or coordinated action. For example, during the Fort Hood, Texas, shooting, two officers in close proximity to the incident took immediate action that successfully stopped the threat. Given these and similar incidents, current thinking reemphasizes that, given proper justification as defined by law and departmental policy, taking immediate action during active shooter incidents, rather than waiting for specially equipped and trained officers, can save lives and prevent serious injuries. This policy emphasizes the fact that time lost by delayed action is likely to result in additional casualties.
  • Excited Delirium Policy and Paper (Volume VII) – While the exact incidence of excited delirium (ExDS) is unknown, officers should be knowledgeable about the signs and symptoms and how best to react in incidences where ExDS is involved.
    • Rapid control of the subject and transfer to the care of emergency medical providers should be the primary objectives of law enforcement officers unless other action is necessary in order to protect officers or others. The underlying causes of ExDS are not fully understood, although its common symptoms have been documented and witnessed by police officers. Persons exhibiting symptomatic behavior should be suspected of being the subject of a medical emergency that could result in sudden death.
  • Responding to Persons Affected by Mental Illness or in Crisis (formerly Dealing with the Mentally Ill) Policy and Paper Update (Volume IV) – Law enforcement officers are often the first responders to situations involving persons affected by mental illness.  These documents provide guidance on how best to approach these situations in an effort to improve the outcome for all involved.
    • Persons experiencing a mental health crisis and their families rely on first responders, particularly law enforcement officers, to behave in an effective manner, treating the person affected by mental illness with compassion and respect. Law enforcement officers who face these complex situations must be as fully prepared as possible so that they can respond in ways that ensure their safety, the public’s safety, and the safety of the person in mental health crisis.  While law enforcement officers may arrest anyone who is breaking the law, it is critical for the officer responding to a mental health call to have the information needed to adequately assess the situation and the support required so that a determination of the appropriate action can be made in the best interests of the subject, the officer, and the community.

To purchase these policies or for more information regarding the IACP National Law Enforcement Policy Center, please visit or contact the Policy Center at or 800-843-4227 x 319.

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