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It shall be the policy of the Westfield Police Department to establish and maintain a “Police Chaplaincy” Program, which shall seek to utilize trained members of the local clergy to assist police personnel and their families, as well as members of the general public, in times of need.
The position of Police Chaplain was created in accordance with N.J.S.A. 40A:14-141 Chaplains.
The Police Chaplain provides ministry, guidance, comfort and support to persons on a voluntary basis.
The Police Chaplain is not an employee of the Town of Westfield, nor the Westfield Police Department The Police Chaplain serves at the sole direction and discretion of the Chief of Police, and is not entitled to any payment or other form of compensation for any services rendered in such capacity.
Westfield Police Department Chaplain: Keith Gibbons
The duties and responsibilities of the Police Chaplain are as follows:
- Making himself/herself available on a 24-hour basis to police personnel and their families, as well as members of the general public, in times of need, upon request or when so desired.
- Accompanying and assisting police personnel when notifying persons that their relatives were involved in accidents or incidents resulting in serious injury or death.
- Providing counsel, comfort and consolation to police personnel and their families, as well as members of the general public, following traumatic or life-altering experiences, upon request or when so desired.
- Providing training to police personnel in areas such as ethics, coping with personal stress, family crisis intervention, human relations and spiritual priorities, as well as the services offered by the “Police Chaplaincy” Program, upon request or when so desired.
- Visiting sick or injured police personnel convalescing at home or in the hospital, upon request or when so desired.
- Attending official department functions, such as awards and promotional ceremonies, funerals and memorial services for active and retired members, police academy graduations, community-policing events and other department-sponsored or sanctioned events.
- Attending the roll calls of various divisions, bureaus, units platoons/and or shifts and participating in “ride-alongs” with police personnel in the performance of their official duties and responsibilities, this so that he/she can become sufficiently acquainted with police personnel.
- Functioning as a liaison between the Westfield Police Department and other religious and faith-minded leaders in the local community.
- Performing other services as determined and directed by the Chief of Police.