Work Group Will Address Recent Officer Contact Report
Monique Cotton, Director of Communication and Public Information, 509.363.8285
Monday, March 23, 2015 at 3:37 p.m.
Following last week’s release of the report “Officer Contacts with Civilians and Race in the City of Spokane: A Quantitative Analysis,” by Ed Byrnes, Ph.D., Associate Professor at Eastern Washington University (EWU) and Brad Arleth, Police Captain with the Spokane Police Department (SPD), the SPD and the Mayor’s Advisory Committee on Multicultural Affairs (MACMA) have formed a work group, comprised of the individuals listed below.
Goals of the work group include the sharing of information and collaborative work to provide recommendations for SPD based on the initial look at five months of data regarding police-citizen contacts contained in the report.
Although the study’s findings provide no evidence of biased policing regarding arrests or searches, and the use of force data show the same initial trend (based on 22 occurrences studied during the five-month analysis), the SPD and the community must work together to understand the reasons for disproportionality during initial citizen contacts.
The initiation of the study in 2012, the collection of data for five months in 2014, the release of the initial findings in the report, and the formation of the work group represent Mayor Condon and Chief Straub’s commitment to proactively addressing issues and engaging the community in holistic discussions regarding why communities of color come in contact with the police and why the police come in contact with communities of color.
The following members of MACMA will serve on the work group:
Gonzaga University Director of Unity Multicultural Education Center
Whitworth University Assistant Vice President for Diversity and Intercultural Relations & Member, Spokane NAACP
Gonzaga University School of Law Professor & Board Member, Smart Justice
Spokane Tribal College Executive Director
Spokane Public Schools Student Intervention Specialist & African American community representative
Eastern Washington University Pride Center Coordinator and Commissioner & Washington State Commission on African American Affairs
Kingdom Fellowship Church Alliance & Multi-Cultural Ministry Alliance
Spokane Police Department, Analyst and former law enforcement officer
Gloria Ochoa - City of Spokane Director of Local Government and Multi-Cultural Affairs and Chair, Washington State Commission on Hispanic Affairs
The objective of the Mayor’s Advisory Council on Multi-Cultural Affairs (MACMA) is to engage community leaders from the City’s diverse communities in dialog related to improving the quality of life for all citizens of Spokane and to advise the Mayor and his leadership team on effective programs and administrative policy to build a healthy community. MACMA is comprised of over 45 members from the public and private sector representing various racial ethnic minority communities, faith communities, and the LGBTQ community. The MACMA meets monthly on various issues and meets quarterly with the Mayor.
Officer John O'Brien