When I walk door-to-door in Portland, I often hear from Portlanders who are worried about the relationship between the Portland Police Bureau and our citizens.
One of my roles here is Police Commissioner. As such, Police Chief Mike Reese and I are working together, along with our officers in uniform, to dramatically change the role of policing in our community.
The city is negotiating a settlement with the federal government over the excessive use of force. We are working with coalitions in the neighborhoods and in the faith community. We are working with the police union. Together, we are working to implement policy changes included in that settlement — not just because the federal government ordered us to do so, but because it is the right and just thing to do.
It is time for a renewed focus on community policing — on assigning more officers to build relationships with the neighborhoods, the businesses, and the citizens they serve. And to do all this in a way that builds real trust between excellent police officers and the residents of Portland.