One part of the Seattle Police Department’s 20/20 Plan, a response by the city to the recent US Department of Justice investigation, is a community outreach program called Safe Communities. The city has held meetings at every precinct in the city, wrapping up their tour with the Central District and Capitol Hill’s East Precinct Thursday.
The meeting is 7-9 p.m. at Miller Community Center.
The big precinct-wide meetings are the first phase of the program, which aims to hone community ideas into changes within the police department. From the Safe Communities promotional document (see full version below):
Our Mission is to ensure the city is meeting our goal of reducing crime and creating the safest possible neighborhoods by deeply engaging with the community.
This goal can only be accomplished with the support and partnership of the City, a broad base of residents and our police officers. This initiative, therefore, is being launched in partnership with the Police Department and builds upon their already existing Community Outreach Initiative (#19 of the 20/20 Plan). This outreach mission is designed to increase and bolster SPD’s goal of providing a sustainable system of outreach to the community—reaching beyond individuals that traditionally engage with the police department—that will also promote equity and strengthen accountability and responsibility. This will be an opportunity for neighborhood residents to meet with each other and members of their precinct police department and other City Departments to focus together on concerns in their neighborhoods.
After Thursday’s meeting, the second phase will start. 5-15 small group meetings will be held within each precinct. The groups will analyze data and review policy issues brought up in the large meetings. Then people from those groups and the city will come back to another round of precinct-wide summits, which should happen in March 2013, followed by a “report back” meeting in May to discuss actions taken and next steps.