Candidate Grubb and Chief Schiffer on community policing

Latest in a series of posts in the wake of the George Floyd murder

ref: Interactions with the police: the good times

Gadfly looking back on important sections of the Hispanic Center’s timely April 12 Community Conversation on “Trust Building with Law Enforcement.”

Toward the beginning of the meeting participants were asked to reflect on what they wanted to get out of it.

The responses by mayoral candidate Dana Grubb (who has public safety as one of his platform issues) and our former police chief Jason Schiffer (now Chief at Lehigh University) reminiscing about a prior form of community policing here was quite interesting.

Grubb:

  • the police don’t really know the people now
  • has seen a couple different versions of community policing while he worked for the City
  • the relationships between officers and people in the neighborhoods created an opportunity for communication
  • but also a sense of trust
  • repairing or restoring those kinds of relationships is very, very important
  • hoping the meeting moves in the direction of restoring reciprocal knowledge of officers and community

Schiffer:

  • talked fondly of community policing he worked in here for 7 years in the late 90s
  • the City rented houses in the various neighborhoods
  • he worked out of a house right off Broadway in the southside
  • spent more waking hours there than at his home
  • blessing to be really a part of the neighborhood and see how that played out in interactions
  • looked at strangely by other officers
  • helped little girl with math homework at kitchen table
  • not “law enforcement” but played out when trust dealing with crime was important
  • mutual trust directly based on the time he spent “in” the community

Leave a Reply