PROVIDENCE — The Rhode Island Police Chiefs’ Association is pleased to recognize Bristol Police Lt. Steven St. Pierre with the Association’s 2021 Exemplary Service Award.
Lt. St. Pierre was presented with the award at the Association’s Trade Show on Tuesday, Nov. 15.
The award recognizes a Rhode Island police officer who has made outstanding contributions to the law enforcement community in the areas of extraordinary valor, crime prevention, detective work, community service and relations, juvenile work, drug control and prevention, training, traffic safety, mentoring, and/or innovative approaches to public safety.
In his nomination, Bristol Police Chief Kevin Lynch wrote in part, “It is without hesitation that I recommend Lt. St. Pierre for this year’s RIPCA award to recognize and showcase to other municipal police departments how one leader can substantially make a difference in his/her community.”
He continued, “I’m beyond impressed with Lt. St. Pierre’s passion and vision to make the community and the police department work in concert. Every police department and Chief of Police would immensely benefit from a leader with the level of empathy, poise and professionalism demonstrated daily by Lt. St. Pierre.”
Lt. St. Pierre began his career in mental health services. Now with Bristol Police, he has been working in conjunction with Bristol’s Health Equity Zone (HEZ) since 2015 and East Bay Mental Health (EBMH) on several initiatives. He most recently developed the Bristol Safe Station, a 24/7 initiative allowing anyone to go to the Bristol Police Department and speak with the staff on duty to be immediately connected to treatment supports and services.
In the area of substance use prevention, Lt. St. Pierre implemented the Recovery Rack Card program in 2016, which connects individuals with recovery resources. The program was started to address recovery referrals for individuals who refused transport to the hospital, and is now provided on every overdose response. Also in 2016, he secured Narcan for the department and conducted training on its use, and secured grant funding to replenish Narcan supplies each year from 2018-2022.
He has also worked with HEZ to open a recovery center at the St. Michael’s parish hall and at the Reynolds School in Bristol, and to start a Naloxbox program with 11 sites in town where people can access free Narcan.
Lt. St. Pierre has been heavily involved in substance use prevention education and guidance within the community by participating in forums on the opioid crisis and overdoses, joining the governor’s Opioid Overdose Task Force, working with HEZ to launch and coordinate an annual recovery rally in the Town of Bristol to celebrate recovery efforts and bring attention to substance use disorders and related issues, and participating in monthly HEZ substance use prevention committee meetings.
Lt. St. Pierre’s recent efforts have included partnering with the University of Rhode Island to put together kits with referral information and Narcan doses that officers can leave at a scene following an emergency overdose response, and working to expand and secure additional support for the Bristol Safe Station.
Furthermore, Lt. St. Pierre has worked as a narcotics investigator and has made an
effort to find and pursue means of jail diversion for eligible individuals.
In the area of suicide prevention, Lt. St. Pierre worked with HEZ in identifying Mount Hope Bridge as an area of concern and worked to acquire a large sign publicizing local resources and a 24/7 emergency number. He also partnered with Roger Williams University to look at data regarding calls for service to the Mount Hope Bridge, participated in public policy work around Bridge Barriers and universal reporting regarding suicide responses at the bridge, and secured grant funding to install cameras on the bridge.
Additionally, with the assistance of HEZ and the Michael Patton Foundation, Lt. St. Pierre has had great success coordinating a local gun buyback program geared toward suicide prevention.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Lt. St. Pierre assisted in planning and implementing a local vaccine clinic, which held 27 clinics over the course of approximately four months, and assisted with 24 COVID-19 rapid test clinics in town.
In the community, Lt. St. Pierre has designed the Bristol Police Youth Academy, a youth leadership camp that is hosted, staffed and sponsored by the department. It engages youth in team building and empowerment activities, has benefited hundreds of kids in Bristol and proven to be a catalyst for maintaining and fostering a positive relationship with the community.
The leadership program has a theme for each camp day and incorporates interactive games, activities and skill building. The Academy is designed to instruct children in the areas of leadership, integrity, respect, honesty, teamwork, communication and courage. The camp also aims to develop leaders and includes short lessons on law enforcement, anti-bullying and substance use prevention.
Lt. St. Pierre has also designed the first-ever women’s self-defense class for the department, and partnered with students from Mount Hope High Schools to film an active shooter training tutorial.
“Lt. St. Pierre demonstrates a passion for serving the Bristol community and has made outstanding contributions to the Bristol Police Department and community as a whole,” said RIPCA President and Narragansett Police Chief Sean Corrigan. “We were pleased to present Lt. St. Pierre with this year’s award in recognition of his efforts.”
The RIPCA award is sponsored by Motorola.