BETTER POLICE INTRODUCTIONS…HAS STARTED WITH A PUBLIC MARCH AND DEMONSTRATION TO INCREASE THE PEACE…STOP THE VIOLENCE AND CREATE A NEEDS ASSESSMENT AND THE FIRST OPEN MONTHLY MEETING WAS HELD FEBRUARY 13, 2015 FROM 4 PM. TO 7:30 PM AT PS 13
Inspector Michael LiPetri, Commander 75th Precinct NYPD
World-class, New York City and perhaps especially Brooklyn in the last month of 2014 may have been at its lowest point in perceived community-police relations on December 17th when police officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu were ambushed and murdered in their patrol vehicle. This event was just after two separate local juries chose not-to-indict police officers which prompted thousands of people in NYC to literally slow down Christmas shopping and “shut-down” Midtown Manhattan protesting against the deaths of unarmed American citizen’s, Michael Brown and Eric Garner who died in the process of their criminal discovery processes and or arrests.
February 13, 2015 before President’s Day the Commander of 75th Precinct Inspector Michael LiPetri (NYPD) and 25-year veteran community-based leader, Winchester Key, CEO of the East New York Urban Youth Corps (ENYUYC) and precinct clergy partnered in an initiative called Increase The Peace/Stop The Violence March and Open Community Discussion that has now changed the course of community police relations.
“Increase the Peace/Stop The Violence March” Pennsylvania Avenue East New York Brooklyn, February 13, 2015
The ENYUYC Increase the Peace/Stop The Violence community building initiative essentially a better police introductions and stakeholder re-introductions model is part of an ongoing effort which focuses on urging leaders to come forth to peacefully discuss conflicts; needs; reduce all forms of violence; improve public trust, safety and community opportunity.
The route of the march with wind chill factors below 10 degrees) was from Gerswin Park on Linden Boulevard and Vermont to Pennsylvania and Williams Avenue to Public School #13 and its auditorium for the Increase The Peace program’s first open community meeting. Obviously many community members did not brave the inclement weather. But Ptr. David Maldonado was there; a prolific young man named, Constant and C. Aaron Hinton founder of DEUCES was there too.
Speakers from the East New York community included: Precinct Commander LiPetri, Winchester Key, I.B. Heyward, Minister Paul Muhammad, Nikki Lucas, Osei Smith, Bishop Dr. Aiken.
The ENY Community Resource Megahub/ March organizers include, 75th Pct. Community Affairs Officer Marcus Johnson, Better Police Introductions and 75th Precinct Clergy Council : Winchester Key (ENYUYC CEO) ,I.B. Heyward (ENYUYC Board Officer) W. Calvin Anderson, M.Ed ( founder of Better Police Introductions.Com), Violet Rodriguez ENYUYC Staff, Bishop Derwin Aiken (Faith of God Assembly and 1st Vice President Pct. Clergy Council), 2nd Vice President, Pastor David Maldinado, Jr (Las Maravillas Del Exodo),Rev. Dr. Robert Townsley (Brooklyn Community Development Advocate), Bro. Paul Muhammad, Student Protocol Director (Muhammad Mosque 7C : Nation of Islam), Bishop (Rabbi) Walter Dunlap, Nikki Lucas People’sFirst Democratic Organization,Minister Marc Anderson and Minister Michael Fleming (Free Mission Temple), Ms. Sharon Leid (Community Representative), Deacon Hector Mario Texidor Lozada (Las Maravillas Del Exodo), And the dedicated staff members of ENYUYC.
Community building is hard work. There are no “quick-fixes”. Reorganizing modern democratic leadership organizations and service structures require “quality engagements”. East New York police are concerned about cordial and effective community relations. Efficient police impact centers as well as return on investment for the new portable and street mounted cameras. These Brooklyn police are first responders (as are our schools and community-based organizations ) and they serve citizenry in encounters when guidance, arrests and/or when “trauma-support” is needed for dislocated Hurricane Sandy residents and large city gentrification. They diffuse the domestic violence problems which currently are a menace to our whole state. They provide positions in the continued controversy of the Stop and Frisk program from Albany to local community advocacy events. They meet and take guns which are proliferating everywhere disproportionately from out of state found on NYC streets.
We are in a time requiring a “learning culture”. Citizens and police must be on keen alert. Schools are part of the learning culture also and k-12 school instruction in civics, public safety, government, and social studies needs to be increasingly practical and evidence-based for citing neighborhood improvements.
With respect to juvenile alternatives to incarceration the progressive interest to support non-violent juvenile offenders with the new Close to Home Programs also requires work from public safety and community alike to make these humane programs effective in reducing the taxpayers burden in costs of incarceration and redirecting the youth away from crime and violence. It will need the support of parents, neighborhood leaders and the faith-based communities.
Our immigrant youth populations and children with full American citizenship need to know how to use the tenets of our democracy now more than ever. They need to rehearse Fourth Amendment rights in terms of “do’s and don’ts” when engaged in police detainment, investigation, searches, arrests and in aftermath discovery in our legal processes.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo Opportunity Agenda 2015
The articulated outcomes the Increase The Peace/Stop The Violence initiative included the establishment of: 1) a youth-led Increase The Peace/Stop the Violence Youth Board and 2) the start of an intense needs assessment for community based programs related to college and career opportunities, 3) job creation and referrals, 4) afterschool and Saturday locations and resources and 5) summer gender specific, education and arts programs.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, “There are keys to improving systems for public safety partnerships in diverse communities. Transparency is an important factor. Community policing involves decision-making processes that are more open than traditional policing. If the community is to be a full partner, the department needs mechanisms for readily sharing relevant information on crime and social disorder problems and police operations with the community. The Increased the Peace/Stop the Violence initiative originally scheduled from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. ended at 7:30 p.m. and all constituent community stakeholders left the event with new and positive expectations.
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