New KCPD Running Club!

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Are you an avid runner or just looking to get started? If so, come be a part of the new KCPD Running Club. Runners of all abilities are welcome! Spouses, retirees, family, and friends can join in, as well. The club will start with weekend runs at different locations in the city, such as the police academy or downtown airport. Routes of different distances will be provided for each run. Additional runs may be added later in the year.

This is a great opportunity to make connections with runners from all areas of the department, so grab your partner or friend and start on the path to a healthier lifestyle.

The first run is scheduled for Saturday, May 12 at 0800. Plan to meet at the police academy’s outdoor running track. Contact Sgt. Jonas Baughman at jonas.baughman@kcpd.org to sign up for the club or ask any questions.

Building Financial Strength in LEO Families: Life Insurance

In part 4 of his video series, Nick Daugherty briefly discusses the topic of life insurance.  He discusses how term life insurance is important for those with families to support.  Regular term life insurance is relatively cheap and a great tool to protect our families should there be an unexpected death.  This is important to keep in mind, as the variety of insurance policies can be confusing.  It is rarely a good idea to mix insurance with investments, which some of the more expensive policies do.  As Nick Daugherty says, “We want our savings to be savings, our investments to be investments, and our insurance to be insurance.”  While this advice is common, if you are unsure, be sure to speak with your trusted insurance company to find the option that works best for you.

If you would like to discuss your personal situation, please contact the Employee Wellness Unit.  We would love to offer you some resources, help teach you how to set a budget, and develop  a plan for reducing debt.  We all will retire before we know it, and by getting our personal finances in order soon, we can focus on living the retirement dream that we all have earned and deserve.

The Employee Wellness Unit has several copies of Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makever, which covers many of the issues discussed by Nick Daugherty.  If you’d like to borrow a copy, please contact us.

Check out this quick video of part 4 for more information:

https://www.policeone.com/financial-planning/videos/469737519-Building-financial-strength-in-LEO-families-Life-insurance/

See the other parts of this series at the below links:

Part 1: Intro and Budgeting

https://kcpdwellness.org/2018/03/07/building-financial-strength-for-leo-families-intro-budgeting/

Part 2: Will and Estate Planning

https://kcpdwellness.org/2018/03/21/building-financial-strength-for-leo-families-will-estate-planning/

Part 3: Debt

https://kcpdwellness.org/2018/04/04/building-financial-strength-in-leo-families-debt/

Nick Daugherty is a retired Sergeant from the Grand Prairie, Texas PD and has taught thousands of officers how to build financial strength by living a debt-free lifestyle and building wealth through proper savings and retirement planning. He’s also coached hundreds of families on how to get out of debt and navigate financial crises. He additionally manages retirement assets for numerous first responders, from line police and fire personnel all the way up to numerous police and fire chiefs. Contact Nick Daugherty or follow him on Facebook and Twitter.  www.buildingfinancialstrength.com

Sleep, Fatigue, and Officer Safety

If you have been to in-service this year, you hopefully received an introduction into the importance of sleep.  This is also something that has been discussed on this blog in the past:  Importance of Sleep in Law Enforcement

40% of police officers suffer from a sleep disorder, which is twice the average of the general public (15-20%).  One of the most important things you can do is to improve your quality of sleep and try to get as close to 7-8 hours as possible.

“The consequences of fatigue are alarming,” Vila says. “It affects eye coordination, reaction time and accuracy. It impairs the parts of the brain that are needed for thinking clearly, solving problems, making difficult moral choices, dealing with stress and frustration, and handling people. Yet, unfortunately, nearly all cops see fatigue as a routine part of the job.”

This part of the article should be a major concern.  Obviously, the impacts of fatigue and a lack of sleep impact the things that we need most in police work.  This should be a major officer safety concern, so we need to make sure that we are looking out for each other when it comes to fatigue.

Please read the below article.  It could save your life.  A lack of sleep can get us hurt in the field, and it can definitely impact our long term health and longevity.  The article gives several tips to improve fatigues, as well as providing information that should be concerning to law enforcement.

https://www.policeone.com/scheduling-systems/articles/6014008-Why-shift-schedule-awareness-is-critical-to-police-wellness/

This is not a problem to only our law enforcement employees, the civilian positions are often subject to many of the same stressors and shift work issues.  Prioritizing sleep should be just as important as any other job function.

If you need help with discussing fatigue or a sleep issue, please contact the Employee Wellness Unit.

-Hat tip to Sgt. Becchina for forwarding the article to the Employee Wellness Unit.

College Savings in Missouri

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Are you expecting to help fund college expenses for your children?  This can be a daunting thing to think about.  I have been dealing with this, I and recently opened a 529 account through MOST for my children.

MOST 529 is a free program that allows you to grow money tax-deferred for college savings through a Vanguard fund.  As long as the money is used for qualified expenses, you pay no taxes on the growth of the fund.  There are now other exceptions that allow you to use a 529 to fund K-12 private schooling, so this could benefit some of you.

If you have kids and no college savings, I challenge you to immediately set up an account and at least start with $25 or $50 monthly deposits.  I personally feel that I need to help reduce the amount of loans that my children may need to take.  I expect them to have some ownership in their educational expenses, but I also don’t want them to be drowning in debt before they have an established job.

It only takes a few minutes to set up the account.  You will even receive a code that will allow others to make deposits into the account.  This can be a great idea for relatives on birthdays and holidays.

More information can be found at:

https://www.missourimost.org/home/basics-of-529s/529-basics.html

If you have other questions or want to discuss this further please contact justin.kobolt@kcpd.org.

 

Dogwatch Difficulties

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For those of us that have spent an extensive amount of time working dogwatch, we all know that it can make many aspects of our life and wellness suffer.  This article from PoliceOne serves as a good reminder of how we can try to stay healthy and happy while working difficult hours.  Of course these concerns and tips apply to all employees who work these difficult hours.

8 tips for cops working the graveyard shift

https://www.policeone.com/health-fitness/articles/7344139-8-tips-for-cops-working-the-graveyard-shift/

If you need help with any of the wellness issues discussed in the article, please reach out to the Employee Wellness Unit for assistance.

Successful Fight Formula

Many of us know that at some point, we will be facing a situation where we must use our defensive tactics to protect ourselves and make an arrest.  When that fight occurs, it is important that we are as prepared as possible so that we can succeed and win to uphold the safety of our community.

While we all generally have a strong base coming out of the police academy, these skills can diminish without proper training and preparation.  This article from Calibre Press touches on some of the factors involved in being prepared for these situations.  If we are not prepared physically and mentally, we could lose the fight, be killed, or suffer some other ailment like a heart attack.

Check out the article below:

“What wins a fight? There’s no way to know for sure, but there are factors that can point towards success. When tied together, these factors create a formula to help officers figure out when and where to spend their time preparing for a fight.”

https://www.calibrepress.com/2018/03/fight-formula/

Healthy Eating on a Budget

Check out this article to give you a basic plan to work from to improve your diet and how much money you are spending on meals.  The best way to give yourself a raise and improve your nutrition is to make more meals at home, rather than eating out.

https://darebee.com/nutrition/budget-healthy-eating.html

“For most of us, food bill is the largest bill we’ve got already before we introduce healthy into the equation. Most of us spend over half of the money we earn monthly on food alone so there is no surprise it is such a sensitive subject. It doesn’t have to be, though, there is a way to keep the food bill low and still eat healthy and well. Just be practical about it.

You can eat healthy, eat well and eat on a budget at the same time if you shop smart and cook everything yourself. Healthy eating isn’t rocket science – you already know what’s good and what’s bad for you, it’s just that junk and takeouts are often more convenient when it comes to a quick budget meal. If you make healthy eating convenient and affordable at the same time, you’ll have no problem switching to better food.”

Building Financial Strength in LEO Families: Debt

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In part 3 of his video series, Nick Daugherty briefly discusses the topic of debt.  This is a major problem in our country, and our profession certainly contributes to this problem.  By understanding what debt does, we can hope to make better decisions moving forward.  Rather than paying interest, we should be investing in retirement funds that will earn us interest for the rest of our lives.

If you would like to discuss your personal situation, please contact the Employee Wellness Unit.  We would love to offer you some resources, help teach you how to set a budget, and develop  a plan for reducing debt.  We all will retire before we know it, and by getting our personal finances in order soon, we can focus on living the retirement dream that we all have earned and deserve.

The Employee Wellness Unit has several copies of Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makever, which covers many of the issues discussed by Nick Daugherty.  If you’d like to borrow a copy, please contact us.

“If you have not debt and ten dollars in your pocket, you have a greater net worth than 1 out of 4 Americans.”

Check out this quick video of part 3 for more information:

https://www.policeone.com/financial-planning/videos/469736519-Building-financial-strength-in-LEO-families-Debt/

See the other parts of this series at the below links:

Part 1: Intro and Budgeting

https://kcpdwellness.org/2018/03/07/building-financial-strength-for-leo-families-intro-budgeting/

Part 2: Will and Estate Planning

https://kcpdwellness.org/2018/03/21/building-financial-strength-for-leo-families-will-estate-planning/

Nick Daugherty is a retired Sergeant from the Grand Prairie, Texas PD and has taught thousands of officers how to build financial strength by living a debt-free lifestyle and building wealth through proper savings and retirement planning. He’s also coached hundreds of families on how to get out of debt and navigate financial crises. He additionally manages retirement assets for numerous first responders, from line police and fire personnel all the way up to numerous police and fire chiefs. Contact Nick Daugherty or follow him on Facebook and Twitter.  www.buildingfinancialstrength.com