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(1) All public safety officers must be certified by POST and meet the applicable employment, education, and certification standards as prescribed by the Montana Code Annotated. 

(2) In addition to standards set forth in the Montana Code Annotated, including but not limited to 44-4-404, MCA, all public safety officers must:

(a) be a citizen of the United States or may be a registered alien if unsworn;

(b) be at least 18 years of age;

(c) be fingerprinted and a search made of the local, state, and national fingerprint files to disclose any criminal record;

(d) not have been convicted of a crime for which they could have been imprisoned in a federal or state penitentiary or a crime involving unlawful sexual conduct;

(e) be of good moral character as determined by a thorough background check;

(f) be a high school graduate or have been issued an equivalency certificate by the Superintendent of Public Instruction, or by an appropriate issuing agency of another state or of the federal government;

(g) successfully complete an oral interview and pass a thorough background check conducted by the appointing authority or its designated representative;

(h) be in good standing with POST and any other licensing or certification boards or committees equivalent to POST in any other state such that no license or certification similar to a POST certification has been revoked or is currently suspended in any other state;

(i) possess a valid driver's license if driving a vehicle will be part of the officer's duties;

(j) abide by the code of ethics contained in ARM 23.13.203; and

(k) complete, within every two calendar years, 20 hours of documented agency in-service, roll call, field training, or POST-approved continuing education training credits, which include but are not limited to a professional ethics curriculum covering the following topics and any additional topics required by the council:

(i) a review of the Code of Ethics ARM 23.13.203 and Grounds for Denial, Sanction, Suspension, and Revocation ARM 23.13.702;

(ii) review of the annual POST integrity report;

(iii) discussion involving core values of each employing agency which may include integrity, honesty, empathy, sympathy, bravery, justice, hard work, kindness, compassion, and critical thinking skills;

(iv) review of agency policy and procedure regarding ethical and moral codes of conduct;

(v) discussion of the similarities and differences between agency and POST consequences for actions that violate policy or rule.

(3) Every public safety communications officer, as a part of the training required in (2)(k), must complete, every two calendar years, a telephone cardiopulmonary resuscitation (TCPR) course. The required TCPR training shall follow evidence-based, nationally recognized guidelines for high-quality TCPR that incorporate recognition protocols for out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) and continuous education. The training must cover a minimum of the following topics:

(a) anatomy and physiology of the circulatory and cardiovascular systems;

(b) relationship between circulatory, respiratory, and nervous systems;

(c) signs and symptoms of acute coronary syndrome (ACS);

(d) signs of life recognition;

(e) early recognition of the need for CPR;

(f) agonal respirations;

(g) hypoxic seizures and sudden cardiac arrest;

(h) pathophysiology of sudden cardiac death/cardiac arrest;

(i) the role of TCPR in cardiac arrest survival;

(j) the importance of minimizing disruptions when TCPR is in progress;

(k) physiology behind the performance of the instructions;

(l) automated external defibrillators and the role they play in resuscitation;

(m) explanation, with practical training exercises, for different TCPR instructions, including: adult, child, infant, neonate, pregnant patients, obese patients, and stoma patients;

(n) critical incident stress management; and

(o) unusual circumstances posing challenges to the delivery of TCPR instructions, such as: patients with do-not-resuscitate orders or physician orders for life-sustaining treatment, patients on ventilators, post-operation patients, patients obviously dead on arrival, electrocution, drowning, strangulation, two-rescuers ventilations, and cardiac arrest from trauma.

(4) The POST Council is not responsible for maintaining records of continuing education hours acquired to satisfy the requirements of (2)(j) and (2)(k). The employing agency must maintain records of the administration of the oath and the continuing education hours acquired to satisfy (2)(j) and (2)(k). Agency records maintained under this rule are subject to audit by the executive director during normal business hours upon reasonable notice to the agency.


History: 2-15-2029, MCA; IMP, 2-15-2029, 44-4-403, MCA; NEW, 2008 MAR p. 1587, Eff. 8/1/08; AMD, 2014 MAR p. 2951, Eff. 12/12/14; AMD, 2017 MAR p. 1953, Eff. 10/28/17; AMD, 2018 MAR p. 2518, Eff. 12/22/18; AMD, 2021 MAR p. 616, Eff. 5/29/21.

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