ERIE.GOV | Your information resource from the government of Erie County, New York

County Executive Elected Officials County Departments Living In Erie County Visiting Erie County Growing your business in Erie County State and regional municipalities

Disability Awareness Training for Law Enforcement

Disability Awareness Training for Law Enforcement

 Erie County April 1 - 2, 2014

the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services, Office of Public Safety and the Niagara University First Responders Disability Awareness Training Ofice are pleased to announce a series of "Disability Awareness Training for Law Enforcement" train the trainer courses.  This series of courses is designed specifically for police officers.  Two day training sessions will be offered in:

  • Erie County April 1 - 2, 2014
  • Essex County April 10 - 11, 2014

The ability to respond to individuals with disabilities ahs posed varying challenges to police officers across the country.  High profile cases have exposed the need for more involved awareness and education regarding the characteristics and challenges some individuals pose.  As the population increases and more individuals are active in the community, the need to ensure accurate and appropriate response is critical.  Studies show that  50 - 80% of an officer's encounters are with an individual with a disability while individuals with disabilities are seven times more the victim of a crime.

This presentation brings together an education on disabilities while enhancing sensitivity.  Included in this are disabilities defined and appropriate response, characteristics and how to identify disabilities, the role of caregivers an dservice providers, candid video instruction, federal and municipality roles and responsibilities, the perspective of the disability community, victimization, challenging scenarios and behaviors and how to address them, current trends and topics, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and etiquette and interaction skills.  An extensive amount of resources will also be provided.

Course Objectives/Topics Covered:

  • Progressive approaches to addressing emergency situations
  • Disabilities defined specific to law enforcement
  • Challenging behaviors and responsiveness
  • Victimization and the disabled
  • Service provision and supports and how to develop a collaborative relationship
  • Emergency services-service provider collaboration
  • Municipality role and responsibility
  • Proper etiquette and interaction skills

Instruction will be taught by David Whalen.  Dave is the Statewide Program Coordinator for First Responder Disability Awareness Training.  He has been training a multitude of service providers and first responders in disability awareness for the past seven years and has been working in the field of disability service/education since 1986.  Dave can be contacted by email at, or by phone at 716-286-7355 or by visiting

There is no fee to attend this course. Although we have planned for a large enrollment, seats are limited. Therefore, you must receive confirmation on attendance. Please complete the course application and have it sent no later than two weeks prior to the start of the course. For your convenience, it may be submitted via email by utilizing the "Submit by Email" radio button on the Course Application form HERE.

Directions to the training site and additional course information will be included in your confirmation notice.  If you have any questions about registering for the training, please contact Senior Training Techician Scott Neff by email at or by telephone at 518-485-7542.