HOSTED MEETING WITH COMMUNITY PARTNERS TO IDENTIFY NEXT STEPSBoston Police Commissioner Edward Davis recently hosted a meeting with several community partners to identify important next steps to increasing diversity within the Boston Police Department. The meeting included members of the Boston Police Command staff along with Minister Don Muhammad, Giovanna Negretti (Executive Director of Oiste), Boston Police Detective Larry Ellison (President of MAMLEO), Boston Police Sergeant Jose Lozano (MAMLEO), Willie Rodriguez (Latino Community Activist and Professor at Wheelock College for Juvenile Justice) and Rahsaan Hall (Attorney for Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights). The group gathered to strategize on how the department may take more proactive steps to diversify supervisor positions.
Commissioner Ed Davis stated, “I am committed to ensuring that diversity within the Boston Police Department is reflective of the community that we serve. I believe that diversity at every level from patrol officer to command staff must be representative in order to continually improve community relations and build trust. I greatly appreciate the commitment demonstrated by our partners who have met with us on this issue and will continue to work with us as we move this effort forward.”
Minister Don commented, “Our meeting was productive and I believe that the Boston Police Department is moving in the right direction on this issue. I look forward to continuing to collaborate with Commissioner Davis on this matter and staying with it until our goals are met.”
Willie Rodriguez added, “I commend Commissioner Davis for his commitment to this issue. I believe it is imperative to proactively prepare officers for long-term career goals, starting in the Academy. I am pleased that the department is dedicated to finding a solution to assisting officers with career development and workforce planning in an effort to promote more diverse representation within supervisory ranks.”
Giovanna Negretti said, \”At the end of the day, we all want to see a more effective police department and a safer city. We believe this can only happen by ensuring that the police force –at all levels- is representative of the community it serves. Unfortunately, that has not been the case. Negretti added, “It seems as though the Commissioner is now taking a more serious and strategic approach to address the issue of diversity among superior officers and specialized units. We will be closely monitoring the short term and long term strategies and hope to see a true, sustainable and transparent process that with result in a more diverse police force in the coming months. This meeting seems to indicate that the Commissioner is finally giving this issue the attention it deserves.\”
The following steps were identified during the course of the meeting. The department will begin to immediately move forward on the following initiatives.
Next Steps Identified:
1. Boston Police Department to post all assignments for job opportunities to encourage a more diverse pool of applicants.
2. Commissioner Davis has asked his command staff to develop information to assist officers with outlining a career path. The goal is to provide a more defined method for officers who are seeking advancement within the organization.
3. Commissioner Davis committed to hosting quarterly meetings with community partners to keep moving this effort forward and providing community members with status updates.
4. The department will continue offering professional development opportunities such as Executive Leadership Training for diverse members of command staff and superior officers.
5. The department will conduct research as to why more minorities are not taking promotional exams.
6. The department to review diversity in staff and training at the Academy to ensure that there is diverse representation beginning at the training level.
7. The department will be more proactive at the Academy to offer promotional exam and testing prep to officers to ensure the highest quality training, preparation and study groups for the testing process.
8. The department will seek to develop a mentoring program for officers interested in advancement.
9. Commissioner Davis is committed to the long-term goal of looking at ways to address the disparate impact that exists in the Civil Service testing process.