Use of Force Certification - Official Illinois Site

 Federal Use of Force Update

Jan. 11, 2024

This past summer the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police Foundation partnered with ILEAS as a sub-awardee on an upcoming less-lethal grant (state grant), being administered by ICJIA, that would assist departments in obtaining new Axon Taser 7s or Axon Taser 10s along with the relevant training.

At the beginning of this process, we were advised that ICJIA via ILEAS was requiring USDOJ Federal Use of Force Certification for departments to be eligible for this grant. Furthermore, the certification must be valid and cannot expire before June 30, 2024. If the certification was set to expire within that time frame, it needed to be renewed to qualify for the grant. With this in mind, we started pushing out the information that we were given so agencies could start the renewal process and stay ahead of the curve.

On Dec. 1, 2023, we received notification from the USDOJ that the Federal Use of Force Certification was no longer going to be required for federal grants in FY24 but was still needed for FY23 grants. In return, we reached out to ICJIA via ILEAS to see if the state was going to still require the certification for the upcoming less-lethal grant. They are not. We had already completed the recertification process for several agencies and were still actively working with numerous other agencies moving through the process. Considering this information, we immediately suspended the recertifications and started to develop a way forward.

The ILACP sees this certification as extremely important and in speaking with many of the agencies currently certified, the consensus was that they agreed, and they desired to see the certification process continue. Agencies pointed out that they see the importance and value of an independent review of their policies and like the added validation by our organization.

As a result of all this, the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police will rebrand the Federal Use of Force Certification to now become the ILACP Use of Force Certification Program. As you may recall, our use-of-force certification service looked at not only the federal mandates required by Executive Order #13929 (which has been rescinded) but also optional criteria that embraced best practices, along with the major operational requirements of the SAFE-T Act. It was also recently updated to show compliance with the UN Human Rights Guidance on Less-Lethal Weapons, which is still needed to apply for the less-lethal grant. This will be a voluntary program for those who wish to participate.

ILACP Use of Force Certification

(To Be Updated) 

Purpose of this certification: For local law enforcement agencies to gain certification of compliance with the Illinois Complied Statutes and SAFE-T Act.  

The Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, through its Illinois Law Enforcement Accreditation Program (ILEAP), is the primary certifying body in Illinois.

You can apply for ILACP Use of Force Certification or renew your certification by filling out this form.

List of Illinois agencies that have received the Use of Force certification

How this works

  1. Local law enforcement agencies that want to demonstrate their use of force policies meet state, federal, and SAFE-T Act guidelines may apply for certification that says their use of force policy (a) adheres to all applicable federal, state, and local laws, and (b) prohibits the use of chokeholds except in situations where the use of deadly force is allowed by law.

  2. This certification is available to any local law enforcement agency, including municipal police departments, sheriff’s offices, university and college police departments, railroad police departments, forest preserve and conservation police departments, and so on.

  3. How a local agency receives this certification:

    a)  Submit an application for this certification by clicking here. The fee is $150, the certification is good for three years. You can pay at the time of application or ask to be invoiced. 

    b)    After submitting your application, you will be notified by an ILEAP assessor within two weeks, but usually more quickly, and you will receive further instructions. You will be asked to submit your use of force policy, taser policy, and proof that you have implemented the policy as well as complying with the United Nations document on Guidance and Less Lethal Weapons found here

  4. This entire process will occur electronically, with documents submitted via email. Instructions and assistance will be provided. 

  5. ILEAP/ILACP Force Assessors will review the application and provide its recommendation for certification in a timely manner. Or, they will provide specific feedback on what is still required to achieve this ILACP Use of Force Certification. Certification will be for three years.

  6. You will receive an official letter from the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, affirming your certification and the date of certification.

  7. Your agency will be included on a list of certified agencies that ILACP regularly updates.

    Apply or Renew ILACP Use of Force Certification Here

ILEAP and Use of Force Certification Director:  Chief Jeff Hamer
[email protected]