|The late Chief Superintendent Douglas Coates||Award Ceremony|
|“Recognition of continuing long and special service in the field of education and training”
Chief Superintendent Douglas Coates was the Acting Police Commissioner of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) and was a casualty of the earthquake which took so many lives in January 2010. His participation in MINUSTAH was born of his commitment to the service of peace which coincidentally began in 1993 with his first United Nations peacekeeping deployment to Haiti. Prior to his third and final deployment back to Haiti, he was the Director of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police International Peace Operations Branch where he was responsible for recruiting, training and employing Canadian police officers in missions around the world. In 2007, he spent six months in Australia with the Australian Federal Police International Deployment Group to exchange lessons identified and lessons learned regarding the strategic direction and management of international policing.
Doug’s relationship with peacekeeping training began shortly after his first deployment. He served as an occasional lecturer on PPC training courses as early as the mid-1990s. His belief in lifelong learning and education was a hallmark of his character. His passion for this work followed him through every position he held and he eagerly took the opportunity to be seconded to the PPC as its Chief Operating Officer from 2004-06.
His understanding of multidimensional peace operations helped set the strategic direction for the PPC, and he was clear that police officers being deployed to peace operations had to be appropriately trained and vetted. This work was shaped by his conducting numerous UN mission assessments in Haiti, East Timor, Kosovo, Cote D’Ivoire, Bosnia Herzegovina and Guatemala. Throughout his secondment to the PPC, Chief Superintendent Coates focused on training and education in support of the UN Integrated Training Services development process on the Standard Generic Training Modules that would ensure common training standards across the spectrum of international policing. Similarly, he was also very committed to the standards required for Formed Police Units (FPUs), knowing that their value in missions was greatly enhanced if properly trained. He spent many hours in meetings discussing what training standards should be, and how these units could be made more useful in the service of peace.
While at the PPC, Doug had the foresight to understand the need for a capacity building program that would ensure that the PPC “could work itself out of a job” by enhancing the training and education offered by national training institutions, and by police forces and gendarmeries to police officers deploying to UN and African Union missions. Long before capacity building was considered relevant, and much before there was a clear appreciation of the importance of policing in peace operations, he was convinced that the long term sustainability of peace was dependent on the rule of law gaining a foothold in post-conflict fragile societies.
Doug was also a strong believer in the work of the IAPTC. He was an active member of the Executive Committee and participated in the annual conferences for a number of years. His objective was to increase the police presence at the conferences and he succeeded at doing so. His leadership of the Police Committee resulted in a growing network of police officers who communicated between meetings. Any who know the difficulty of getting IAPTC committee members to work between meetings will appreciate the success Doug had with his committee. They brought real issues forward at conferences because they had spent time between meetings discussing real issues!