Incident Management / Intervention Model
The Incident Management Intervention Model (IMIM) is what RCMP officers use to assess and manage risk in all encounters with the public. It helps to determine what intervention is needed, such as verbal de-escalation or the use of another method.
Our IMIM aligns with the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police's National Use of Force Framework. It contributes to a common vocabulary approach to police intervention by police agencies across Canada.
New cadets at the RCMP Academy learn about the IMIM in their second week. It's then integrated into training for the remaining 24 weeks.
After leaving depot, all RCMP officers need to re-certify on the IMIM every year.
The IMIM is not policy or law. It shouldn't be considered a model to justify use of a police intervention.
Incident Management Intervention Model in practice
The IMIM is a visual aid that helps officers picture an event and explain why they used the intervention methods they did. It's also helpful when an officer needs to clearly explain their actions in court. The model is also a teaching aid used for training officers.
In April 2021, the RCMP updated the Incident Management Intervention Model (IMIM) annual re-certification training as well as the IMIM graphic to place more emphasis on communication and crisis intervention and de-escalation. Crisis Intervention and De-escalation now surrounds the graphic, emphasizing de-escalation as the preferred result of any interaction. Crisis Intervention and De-escalation provides police with tools that can often be used instead of physical intervention options.
The graphic reflects the rapidly evolving and dynamic nature of police work. Unlike a continuum or linear pathway, the model doesn't lead the officer through a stepped progression of intervention options. The officer instead selects an appropriate option to control the situation, based on:
- Tactical considerations
- low light
- presence of backup
- availability of cover
- distance from the subject
- The officer's perceptions
- the size of the person
- weapons nearby
- previous encounters with the person
- the person's emotional state
- Situational factors
- time of day
- number of people present compared to number of police officers present
- Subject behavior
- active or passive resistant
- grievous bodily harm or death
This information forms what is known as the officer's individual risk assessment.
Police officers are also trained to continually monitor risk during an interaction with the public as things can change very quickly. Police officers must always be ready to shift tactics.
Explaining the intervention
Police officers must also clearly explain what happened before, during and after the incident. This process is called "legal articulation."
An officer's intervention is measured against what a reasonable, trained, prudent police officer would do faced with a similar set of circumstances.
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