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By Lisa Flueckiger, Senior Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Rio de Janeiro’s Military Police say they have decided to increase the training for its new members to twelve months total, starting in September. The increased training will include new modules focusing mainly on community policing and conflict management.

Community policing is the focus of the new training, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil News
Community policing is the focus of the new training, photo by Rogerio Santana/Imprensa RJ.

The new ‘Curso de Formação de Soldados’ (Training course for soldiers) will increase its theory part from 7 to 10 months and then be finished with a two-months ‘internship’, shadowing experienced military policemen and women.

The curriculum will now include 32 different subjects, instead of 27, and total in 1,437 hours of classes instead of 1,084 hours before. New or increased subjects include community policing, conflict management, measured use of force, non-lethal techniques for self-defense, as well as the study of real life cases all in order to reduce conflict.

“The new curriculum meets the demands of society, as well as of the PM to expand the community police concept and the measured use of force. The role of the soldier is not a judge or mediator. He is the representative of the PM in the streets and to manage conflicts and direct them to the appropriate bodies to seek the best solutions,” Pehkx Jones Gomes da Silveira, under-Secretary for Education, Appreciation and Prevention, stated.

The student officers will also receive a special training in a virtual classroom with 180 degree screens and the option for more than fifty scenarios, where the focus will now be on non-lethal techniques and equipment.

According to authorities, the new training focus will also extended to policemen and women already in the force. Eight training centers will be created throughout Rio de Janeiro state, where current police have to take a class at least once per year in how to use force.

Furthermore, the police will be equipped with non-lethal equipment such as batons, tasers (stun guns) and handcuffs, in order to discourage the use of firearms.

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