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Chief Savano Statement Regarding Black, Indigenous and People of Color

In keeping with the Mayor’s Pledge to review use of force policies, engage the community in listening sessions, hear stories and experiences from community members, report those stories and experiences to the public, and then reform policies based on the feedback we have done the following;

I immediately began reaching out to community members and organizations that represent the Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) community.  I specifically communicated with members of the NAACP, Petaluma Blacks for Community Development (PBCD), and the Petaluma Community Relations Council (PCRC) where we have been a member of since its inception in 2016.

The mission of the PCRC is to serve as a coalition of individuals and groups, promoting the values of respect, appreciation and understanding of diversity among all people in our community. By fostering positive human relations, we identify and confront discrimination, respond to the needs of our community, and serve as a source of information and advocacy.  The members of the PCRC include Mentor Me, Committee on the Shelterless, ELIM Lutheran Church, Petaluma United Methodist Church, OnePetaluma, Hate-Free Petaluma, It Won’t Happen Here, St. James Catholic Church, B’nai Israel Jewish Center, Petaluma Blacks for Community Development, North Bay Organizing Project, Petaluma People Services Center, Unitarian Universalists of Petaluma, Latino Student Congress Sonoma County, Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity, Conservation Action Fund for Education, Metta Center for Nonviolence, St. John’s Episcopal Church, Petaluma Housing Action Team, Mothers Care, Petaluma Arts Center, Sonoma County Japanese American Citizens, St. Vincent de Paul Church, Women Walking, Rebuilding Together Petaluma, National Association of Social Workers.  Since the town hall, I have also spoken to the Team for Inclusivity, Diversity, and Equality (TIDE), local services clubs, business owners, faith-based organizations, education officials, and members of the community who call Petaluma their home.

In my conversations with community members, I invited all to attend the first town hall meeting where we intended to start the conversation by reporting on the current status of our use of force policies and begin multiple listening sessions.  The town hall meeting on June 16, 2020 involved questions and answers that have resulted in these answers to address the more than 350 questions received.  I also asked each of the community members what I should be doing as your chief of police to help the community move forward.  The feedback received was to be available and open to listening, specifically from the BIPOC community members and our youth.  I asked each community member who else I should reach out to and invite to the table.  I was grateful to hear that most of the people I had already contacted were suggested.

In response to the Mayor’s Pledge and our city’s commitment, I worked with city staff to create a DRAFT community engagement proposal to include listening sessions, and to specifically engage members of our BIPOC community.  This discussion was placed on the city council agenda for Monday, July 6, at 6:45pm to allow public input on what the next steps should be to review, engage, report, and reform city policies.

 

Police Chief Ken Savano


I immediately began reaching out to community members and organizations that represent the Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) community.  I specifically communicated with members of the NAACP, Petaluma Blacks for Community Development (PBCD), and the Petaluma Community Relations Council (PCRC) where we have been a member of since its inception in 2016.

by Police Chief Ken Savano

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