On October 18, 2016, the OC Human Relations Commission reconvened the participants of the very successful Solidarity Summit, held in August, 2016, to further explore how police-community relations could be improved.
The purpose of the August Solidarity Summit was to bring law enforcement & community members together to engage in dialogue and explore topics related to:
• Increasing awareness on how different life is based on the uniform you wear, skin color, religion, ethnicity, gender, etc.
• Improving police training, accountability, and transparency
• Identifying creative ways to engage and educate community members about police practices & protocols
The Goals of the October 18 reconvening meeting were to:
1. Develop actionable items and identify 3 areas of priority
2. Networking & building coalitions that can move some of the ideas/projects forward
3. Discussion topics are consistent themes that have been shared through multiple meetings/convenings
A total of 65 people attended, including 14 participants from the OC Sherriff’s Department, Garden Grove PD and Irvine PD. The organizers were very pleased with the turnout and in the level of participation. As a result of the meeting, five areas of priority were identified:
1. Citizen academies & trainings at churches/schools
2. Increased focus on Community-Oriented/Relationship-Based Policing so that officers build trust and relationships with community members rather than only interactions during crisis/crime situations.
3. Inter-faith Forums
4. Media Accountability
5. Training for officers (LGBT, implicit bias, immigrants, etc.)
Amongst the next steps will be the development and distribution of a survey to gather feedback and information about what other organizations are doing related to the topic at hand.
The COR AME Church and Orange County Solidarity collaborated with OC Human Relations on organizing the event.