04-30-2017  11:12 pm      •     
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NEWS BRIEFS

"How to Prepare for an Earthquake"

Free presentation on earthquake preparedness at Roosevelt High School, May 2 ...

Clark College Hosts Over 100 Employers at Job Fair

Annual Career Days workshops and job fair provides students and community members with skills and connections to find jobs ...

Oscar Arana Chosen to Lead NAYA’s Community Development

Oscar Arana to serve as NAYA’s next Director of Community Development ...

High School Students Launch Police Forum, May 16

Police Peace PDX is a student-founded organization that bridges divides between community and police ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

OPINION

Take Care of Yourself, Your Health and Your Community

Sirius Bonner, Director of Equity and Inclusion for Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette, writes about the importance of...

Sponsors of Hate Today Must Be Held Accountable

The Foundation for the Carolinas has spent tens of millions of dollars over the years supporting groups that sponsor hate ...

John E. Warren on the Woes of Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo's rating downgraded from "Outstanding" to "Needs to Improve" ...

CBC Opposes Nomination of Judge Gorsuch and the Senate Should Too

Americans need a Supreme Court justice who will judge cases on the merits, not based on his or her personal philosophies ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

ENTERTAINMENT

Assistant police chief Larry O'Dea

Editorial

Last week Portland’s Mayor Hales announced his choice to replace Police Chief Mike Reese with Assistant Chief Larry O’Dea.  We think it was a good choice.

Hales’ decision means Portland’s Police Bureau should have a smooth handover of power when Reese retires in January. It also means his successor, a 28-year veteran of the bureau, is well known both inside and outside the bureau. That’s a good thing for the City of Portland and a police department that has a long, painful history in our community.

Assistant Chief O’Dea has strong support from rank and file officers as well as from police managers. With a reputation for pushing for diversity in hiring and promotions, he also is well liked in communities of color. This is a man who spends his weekends building houses as a Habitat for Humanity volunteer and spends many hours reaching out to minority communities so he can understand our concerns.

O’Dea was at the negotiating table when the civil rights settlement with the Department of Justice was nailed down. He knows what the bureau has to do to regain the trust lost in a hail of police shootings, racial profiling incidents and the brutal death of James Chasse.  

The Albina Ministerial Alliance is holding a forum on the Ferguson shooting and the Department of Justice settlement agreement, Nov. 1.

When O’Dea laid out his priorities to reporters, his number one concern was clear: Police officers must build relationships with the communities they work with.  It should include our vulnerable homeless population as well as Portland’s communities of color.

We welcome O’Dea’s emphasis on community policing and his focus on increasing the diversity of the force.  

So will O’Dea be the police chief who wins over hearts and minds? That remains to be seen. What we can say is that he comes to the job with every opportunity to make Portland’s Police Bureau work for citizens – not against us.

What do you think? 

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