The Columbus Community Safety Advisory Commission has released its report to Mayor Andrew J. Ginther, making 80 recommendations covering topics of recruitment, training, diversity and inclusion, community engagement and independent investigations.
“When I selected this group in 2018, I purposely selected people who were diverse in every way. The Commission included community leaders and safety officers, pastors and social service professionals, academics and activists. I am grateful for everyone for lending their voice and their perspectives to this process,” said Mayor Ginther.
“It is clear that to create trust and meet the expectations of our residents, we need change.”
“Police Chief Tom Quinlan has already begun to address some of the recommendations, including:
- Removing leave forfeiture as an option for sustained finding of discrimination and or bias.
- Seeking opportunities to involve more community members into recruit training to improve cultural competency.
- Developing more insightful public community surveys of experiences with police interactions.
- Encouraging mentoring of police officers to build diversity through the ranks.
- Implementing a Police Initiated Diversion Program for juveniles arrested for criminal activity.
- Considering ways to implement the hijab into uniform standards.
“Chief Quinlan expects his bureau commanders and managers to address all of the Matrix and Commission recommendations in their bureau presentations, including realistic cost projections.”
Mayor Ginther reiterated commitment to continuing the Safety Commission in some form to assure accountability and transparency, pledging to explore a version of a civilian review board that works best for Columbus.
The Chair of the commission, Janet E. Jackson said that the 80 “recommendations are wide-ranging, but they reflect great depth of thought and a sincere desire to provide you and the Division of Police guidance on how to best address some of the greatest challenges facing the Division and our community today.”
The Commission, composed of 17 members, spent the last 18 months identifying, reviewing and recommending best practices to ensure the Columbus Division of Police has the best training, policies and procedures to protect and serve our entire community.
(The Columbus Community Safety Advisory Commission Report can be read here.)