Tips for Talking Policing Issues
Lead with Shared Values. We all want:
To live in safe communities,
To be treated with dignity and respect, and
For law enforcement to uphold and protect our civil rights.
· Many groups - people of color, immigrant communities, progressive circles – already understand issues like systemic racism, unequal treatment, over-reliance on force and arrest. Move them to action.
· Other audiences want to believe recent stories of abuse and unequal treatment to be isolated incidents, and want to trust law enforcement (local police, border patrol, ICE, etc.) generally. Go above and beyond to connect the dots when talking with less engaged/affected groups.
Move beyond denouncing.
· Highlight positive solutions and alternatives that ensure equal justice and protect public safety.
· Assign specific responsibility of who can do what to improve policing practices instead of issuing general calls for change.
- To work for all of us, our justice system need law enforcement that treats people equally and investigates based on evidence, not stereotypes or bias.
- But, too often, police departments use racial profiling, which is singling people out because of their race or accent, instead of based on evidence of wrongdoing. That’s against our national values, endangers our young people, and reduces public safety.
- Law enforcement officers need clear rules and proper training to avoid racial profiling and focus on evidence and public safety.
- Tell the Department of Justice to hold police departments responsible for protecting everyone’s civil rights.