The LaGrange Police Department hosted a Trust Initiative Event today at LaGrange College. The initiative was started to build trust between law enforcement across racial lines.
There was a series of workshops lead by different leaders from across America in hopes to enlighten and teach the audience about racial tension and authority.
“Recognizing that as communities work together through and across racial lines, those difficult issues that have plagued many of our cities can be addressed effectively,” says LaGrange Police Department Chief Louis Dekmar.
Nine communities attended. Some of those were including Rome, Thomasville, Covington, LaGrange, Cobb County, Dekalb County. Each community was represented by their chief of police and other members of government who agreed to take part in the trust-building initiative.
The purpose of the workshops was to provide background for the frustrations that marginalized communities have felt because of the history of racism in America.
“The entire nation needs something like this. The relationship between the police and the community, especially the communities of color is extremely important these days. To be apart of a trust-building between police and community is paramount in our profession,” says Thomasville Police Chief Troy Rich.
The event lasted all day as audience members listened to expert panelists and asked questions about the material. Professor Geoff Ward detailed research on how the history of racial violence continues to impact patterns of conflict, violence, and inequality still today so when communities come together to repair itself, they have a background on what does and doesn’t work.
“There’s some evidence that in places where communities come together to disavow white supremacism, its history and legacy, the power of these past events seems to diminish. It does give us hope that the kinds of things these community partners are doing today in places like LaGrange and other cities can subsequently impact people’s lives today and in the future,” Professor Ward says.