Rhode Island Police Chiefs’ Association to Announce New Initiative Addressing Statewide Policing Standards and Practices

RI Chiefs Come Together to Create Campaign of Promises for their Communities

NOTE: All media members are welcome to attend. To ensure social distancing, media outlets are asked to RSVP in advance. To RSVP, please email Benjamin Paulin at ben@jgpr.net. Check-in is at 9:30 a.m.

CRANSTON — The leaders of each of Rhode Island’s municipal and campus police departments, as well as the Rhode Island State Police, will come together this week to launch a campaign that will make a series of promises and policy amendments aimed at increasing the public’s faith in its police departments. The campaign will redouble a statewide focus on training, transparency, communication and human rights.

Over the past few weeks, the executive board of the Rhode Island Police Chiefs’ Association (RIPCA) and its 48 member chiefs have met to discuss a statewide strategy, approach and response to public safety and policing in response to the murder of George Floyd and other acts of overt racism, systemic racism and police brutality across the nation.

“We have been listening and hearing the calls for change and want to unite in our effort to address these important issues and reaffirm our commitment to public safety and protection for all Rhode Islanders,” said Chief Sidney Wordell (Ret.) Executive Director of the Rhode Island Police Chiefs’ Association. “By acting in unison and making a series of changes and promises that will affect every law enforcement agency in the state, it is our sincere hope that we can show — not simply tell — our residents and community members that we take racism and police brutality seriously and are committed to ending both in our profession.”

WHEN:
Thursday, June 25 at 10 a.m.

WHERE:
Cranston Police Training Complex, 493 Phenix Ave., Cranston, RI 02920

WHO:
-Rhode Island Police Chiefs’ Association Executive Board
-Police Chiefs throughout the state of Rhode Island

WHAT:
The Rhode Island Police Chiefs’ Association and its member chiefs will announce a new campaign and a list of sweeping promises and policy changes being enacted across every agency in the state. Among those promises are commitments to open book policies and procedures, better communication with the public and further training on diversity, implicit biases and procedural justice.

“Through our state accreditation program, our police departments are already held to a very high standard here in Rhode Island. Improvements and growth can always be made, however, and this plan will further bolster the protocols and standards our departments have around racial discrimination and police brutality,” said RIPCA President and Lincoln Police Chief Brian Sullivan.

The campaign’s messaging will be widely distributed by all law enforcement agencies in Rhode Island, including releases to the news media, police websites and social media, in a public service announcement video, a program document and an infographic, to ensure that the message is broadcast through all possible channels to as many people as possible.

The chiefs will be gathering on Thursday to announce the initiative and formally sign the program documents.

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Rhode Island Police Chiefs’ Association to Announce New Initiative Addressing Statewide Policing Standards and Practices