The probationary employment period presents public safety agencies with a unique opportunity to evaluate performance, identify “red flags” and take proactive measures to address misconduct. Agencies depend on Field Training Officers (FTOs) to closely supervise probationary officers, provide corrective feedback and document any fundamental performance issues before the transition to full-time officer and the legal protections that comes with it.
While it is certainly normal for probationary officers to make mistakes, there is often a clear distinction between understandable mental mistakes versus performance issues that reflect on core character issues such as honesty, willingness to accept responsibility for errors and ability to receive corrective feedback. FTOs are responsible for making this crucial distinction on a day-to-day basis during an officer’s probationary employment period.
This course will provide attendees with the knowledge necessary to recognize the most common and costly personnel liability issues facing FTOs. Federal and state statutes and case law will be utilized to illustrate the potential pitfalls of employee relations in public safety administration and the means by which those liability risks can be managed.
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