The mission of the African American Sub-Group on Police Accountability is to create positive changes in our Police Department to create a safer community for residents and police.
Our visions as the Police Advisory Sub-Committee is to:
- Create a community where everyone feels safe and respected and,
- Have a community-driven safety response that is by and for the community.
(1) Removing Student Resource Officers (SROs) from Providence Public Schools and replacing them with: school culture coordinators or similar structure; restorative justice practices; peer mediation/safety teams; more robust family engagement.
- The African American Sub-Group on Police Advisory partnered with the Providence Human Relations Commission for a community meeting to discuss student resource officers (SROs) in Providence Public Schools.
- Link to the community meeting: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xuBXBB96J8k&feature=youtu.be
- The sub-group also compiled recommendations to the Mayor and Superintendent on a phased approach to remove SROs from PPSD. These recommendations were submitted to the Mayor’s Policy Office which has drafted an official memo in which has been submitted for review to the Superintendent of PPSD and Mayor Jorge Elorza. Providence School Health Needs Assessment
- The African American Sub-Group on Police Advisory reviewed the City Use of Force Policy submission form before publicized to maximize community response.
- The African American Sub-Group partnered with the Human Relations Commission and the African American Advisory Group Police Advisory Subgroup for a community meeting to discuss the Providence Police Department’s Use of Force Policy and the Obama Foundation’s Commit to Action. Commit to Action is a campaign that Mayor Elorza signed onto that commits to bringing immediate change to police departments throughout the country.
- The African American Sub-Group partnered with the Human Relations Commission for a community meeting to discuss the Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights. Adopted in 1976, LEOBOR protects officers accused of misconduct from being immediately fired or placed on unpaid leave.
- Looking ahead, the sub-group is interested in lobbying for the support of Representative Anastasia Williams An Act Relating to State Affairs and Government – Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights.
Police Advisory Stance on SRO’s
The entire group moves to remove SRO’s completely from schools
Student Resource Officers in Providence Public Schools
- SROs in the City of Providence are concentrated in schools that serve large populations of low-income and minority students, contributing to the over-policing of these communities and the school-to-prison pipeline.
- SROs are not a proven method to contribute to a positive climate within schools.
- The vast majority of arrests by SROs in PPSD were made in regards to student misconduct and non-emergency disruptive behavior at school. Arresting students on school premises does not promote the best interests of students, the school system, law enforcement and the community at large.
Remove SROs off the premises of these high schools and have them respond to calls on an as-needed basis.
(1)Create volunteer safety corps made up of members of the community, student leadership and more to improve the culture of violence inside of Providence Public Schools.
(2)Fund Arts, Culture and Theatre opportunities for youth to enhance school culture.
The vast majority of arrests by SROs in PPSD were made in regards to student misconduct and non-emergency disruptive behavior at school. Arresting students on school premises does not promote the best interests of students, the school system, law enforcement and the community at large.
Bring in more funding for social workers, behavioral health specialists and guidance counselors to better help students who are in crisis and in need of mental health and behavioral health supports. PPSD School Assessment Needs
Vernon Martin and Anita Bruno
Representative Anastasia Williams, Angie Leary, Dr. Dannie Ritchie, Elise Swearingen, Herlin Perry, Jim Vincent, Juan Cameron, LaToya Watts, Mary Beth Meehan, Nicole DuFresne, Councilwoman Nirva LaFortune, Pamela Hughes, Ray Smith, Regina Clement, Sal Monteiro, Shane Lee and Sherri Bevel.