Frequently Asked Questions

A. There is no hard fast rule as to your membership with a specific Chapter of C.O.P.S. If you are interested in becoming a member of a Chapter, you, family members or co-workers can decide. You may want to join the Chapter where your fallen officer worked, or where he/she lived, or where you live. The normal procedure is that your name will be included on a National C.O.P.S. listing depending on your mailing address. It would be up to you to inform that Chapter that you wish to be listed with another Chapter of your choice, and then inform the other Chapter of your intent so you can be kept up to date on events and activities of that Chapter. The decision is yours. Likewise, if you do not wish to be included in any Chapter listing as a member, contact the Chapter so your name can be properly annotated and your wishes respected.

A. The Department of Justice provides the Federal criteria through the Public Safety Officers’ Benefits Program. See information at the Public Safety Officers’ Benefits (PSOB) Program web site.

A. There are many organizations that have been established to support survivors and memorialize law enforcement officers who are killed in the performance of their duties. At times it may seem overwhelming for survivors to discern between the many organizations. We would like to shed some light on the differences between our organization and the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (NLEOMF).

National C.O.P.S. was established in 1984 as a national family support organization to assist immediate family members with the emotional trauma suffered after the death or murder of their police officer loved one within the United States (DC-COPS Chapter received its charter in 1998). C.O.P.S. membership now consists of over 15,000 families and, unfortunately, grows every year. Annual seminars and retreats for spouses, parents, children (and many other family members and co-workers) have assisted with the rebuilding of lives shattered by an untimely death. Almost every state in the Union has a chapter or branch of C.O.P.S., available on short notice to assist with the emotional support of any family or agency that experiences the untimely death of one of our nation’s protectors who wears the badge and blue.

Separately, the NLEOMF was founded in 1984 to generate increased public support for the law enforcement profession. On October 15, 1991 the NLEOMF was able to dedicate the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial located in our nation’s capital. The NLEOMF records and commemorates the service and sacrifice of our nation’s law enforcement officers. The NLEOMF is also responsible for the construction and funding of the anticipated National Law Enforcement Memorial Museum expected to open in 2013 near the Memorial in DC. The NLEOMF has collected the information and catalogued the history of more than 19,000 law enforcement deaths in our nation’s history.

Even though there has been confusion in the past, please keep in mind that the Washington, DC Chapter of C.O.P.S. is not involved with any NLEOMF fund-raising or decision-making activities (such as what names go on the wall). However, we share the goal of never forgetting our fallen heroes.