Do You Trust Interior Department Law Enforcement?

The Department of the Interior today announced that it would hold 12 listening sessions and invite public comment on ways to strengthen public trust and confidence in the Department’s law enforcement programs, ensure appropriate policy and oversight is implemented, and assure supportive resources are available for officer mental health, wellness, and safety. Feedback from the public will inform the work of the Department’s Law Enforcement Task Force and help usher the nation into the next phase of community-focused law enforcement.  

Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland launched the Task Force last year to implement the highest standards for protecting the public and provide necessary policy guidance, resources, and training to agency personnel.

“The Department of the Interior has a unique opportunity through the Law Enforcement Task Force to be a national leader in community-focused law enforcement and a model of how to build trust and collaboration between law enforcement and the public that they serve,” said Deputy Secretary of the Interior Tommy Beaudreau. “These listening sessions will be critical as the Department works to ensure the highest standards for protecting the public and provide policy guidance, resources, and training to our cherished law enforcement officers.”

On May 25, 2022, President Biden signed an Executive Order on Advancing Effective, Accountable Policing and Criminal Justice Practices to Enhance Public Trust and Public Safety. This EO “will enhance public trust by promoting accountability, transparency, and the principles of equality and dignity in policing.” The Department’s Law Enforcement Task Force is working to support the President’s direction.

Led by Deputy Secretary Beaudreau and comprised of law enforcement representatives from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Reclamation, and the DOI Office of Law Enforcement and Security, the task force has been working diligently over the last year to establish the scope of the project, ensure equity in all its work, and develop strategies for outreach and data collection

In an effort to identify opportunities for improvement in law enforcement programs of the Department of the Interior (DOI) (National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Indian Affairs, and Bureau of Reclamation) and to strengthen public trust in the Department’s law enforcement practices and policies, the DOI is hosting twelve (12) listening sessions open to the public. DOI seeks to engage with diverse stakeholders who interact with, are impacted by, or have experience with DOI Law Enforcement Officers to strengthen public relations and inform DOI law enforcement programs. Transparency, building public trust and ensuring accountability are key tenets that support equitable law enforcement experiences across diverse geographic and demographic populations. The public can submit comments through this Federal Register Notice which will inform themes and recommendations for the Department. 

12 Virtual Listening Sessions Coming Up

DATES: The Department of the Interior will hold twelve (12) virtual listening sessions on the following dates:  

Tuesday, June 21, 2022, from 3 p.m. – 5 p.m. EDT  

Thursday, June 23, 2022, from 12 p.m. – 2 p.m. EDT  

Saturday, June 25, 2022, from 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. EDT  

Monday, June 27, 2022, from 8 p.m. – 10 p.m. EDT  

Tuesday, June 28, 2022, from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m. EDT  

Thursday, June 30, 2022, from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. EDT  

Wednesday, July 6, 2022, from 12 p.m. – 2 p.m. EDT 

Wednesday, July 13, 2022, from 10 p.m. – 12 a.m. EDT  

Thursday, July 14, 2022, from 7 p.m. – 9 p.m. EDT  

Saturday, July 16, 2022, from 2 p.m. – 4 p.m. EDT 

Interested persons are also invited to submit comments in writing or online. We invite you to submit comments on this notice. You may submit comments online at https://www.regulations.gov/ by entering “DOI-2022-0008” in the search bar and clicking “Search” or by mail to U.S. Department of the Interior, LE Task Force, 1849 C Street, NW, MS 3428, Washington, DC 20240. You may respond to some, or all of the questions listed in the “Supplementary Information—Questions” section of this document. All public comments received are subject to the Freedom of Information Act and will be posted in their entirety at https://www.regulations.gov/, including any personal or business confidential information provided. Do not include any information you would not like to be made publicly available.