Mission Vision & Values


The National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement’s (NACOLE) mission is to create a community of support for independent, civilian oversight entities that seek to make their local law enforcement agencies, jails, and prisons more transparent, accountable, and responsive to the communities they serve.


NACOLE envisions a field of civilian oversight where:

  • Professional, well-funded, well-trained, properly authorized, and independent oversight organizations, known to the public, are accepted, supported, and promoted;
  • NACOLE's expertise and ability to support civilian oversight nationally and internationally is sustained by sufficient staffing, financial resources, and public presence; and
  • Law enforcement agencies act constitutionally, without bias, are respectful of the public, hold officers accountable, and seek public input in developing and implementing policies, procedure, and training.


The National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement elevates and advances high professional and ethical standards for and promotes the independence and authority of all entities charged with civilian oversight. To achieve its mission and promote its vision, NACOLE:

  • Assists, supports, and educates jurisdictions considering or developing civilian oversight of law enforcement;
  • Trains, educates, and sets high professional and ethical standards for organizations and practitioners charged with civilian oversight of law enforcement;
  • Provides educational and informational resources relating to the field of civilian oversight of law enforcement;
  • Supports efforts and strategies that afford civilian oversight organizations independence, adequate authority, and sufficient funding and staffing; and
  • Defends members against attacks that impede or undermine the effectiveness of civilian oversight.


  • We value all human life and the dignity of every person;
  • We value the public’s right to be treated with dignity and respect by law enforcement;
  • We value democratic policing and the power of each community to shape its own policing practices and standards;
  • We value the principles of participation and respect, fairness and impartiality, transparency and trustworthiness, and understand that they apply to the work of both civilian oversight and law enforcement;
  • We value diversity of NACOLE board and committee members, program participants, and among NACOLE members and law enforcement executives and officers;
  • We value all NACOLE members and their multifaceted contributions to the field of civilian oversight; and

We value our profession and our membership’s commitment to civilian oversight of law enforcement.


The current version of the Mission Vision & Values of the National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement was adopted by the association's Board of Directors or February 1, 2019.