Mayor’s Task Force on Community and Police Relations

Mayor/CEO David Alvey of the Unified Government of Wyandotte County, Kansas City, KS, has announced the creation of a Task Force on Community and Police Relations to help guide discussion and advance the dialogue between the community (in particular African American and Hispanic populations) and law enforcement.

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Overview

Overview:

The objective is to help build and strengthen trust between the community and law enforcement by identifying issues, perceptions, and challenges to that trust that exist today, creating awareness of these issues, and providing a vehicle and forum in which this information will be distributed and shared with law enforcement, local officials, and the community as a whole.

Ultimately, the goal is for law enforcement and local leaders to utilize these learnings to expand education and awareness, review and improve policing policies and procedures, and build upon community relations and outreach efforts to ensure a high level of trust, interaction, and inclusiveness with all groups and populations in historically diverse Wyandotte County.

The Task Force will be co-chaired by Mayor David Alvey and UG Commissioner Harold Johnson. Task Force members include:

  • Mayor/CEO David Alvey, Unified Government of Wyandotte County, KCK (co-chair)
  • Commissioner Harold Johnson, Unified Government of Wyandotte County, KCK (co-chair)
  • Rev. Tony Carter, Jr. Salem Missionary Baptist Church
  • Yareli Castor, Student, Donnelly College, KCK resident
  • Monsignor Stuart Swetland, President, Donnelly College
  • Michael York, Interim Chief of Police, Kansas City, KS Police Department
  • Don Ash, Sheriff, Wyandotte County Sheriff’s Office
  • Evelyn Hill, Community Engagement Director, Avenue of Life
  • Curtis Smart, M.A. Public Health Administration and KCK Entrepreneur
  • Maximilian (Max) Mendoza, Executive Director, Heartland 180, Inc.

The Task Force is finalizing its community input plan, with expectations that this will include 8-10 public forums, listening sessions, online comment tools, and a variety of other ways for the community to participate and share their thoughts. Once finalized, the Task Force will share a summary of these findings publicly with law enforcement, local officials, and the Unified Government.

Mission

Mission:

The Task Force on Community and Police Relations will work to coordinate and gather inputs and insight from the community on law enforcement perceptions, policies, procedures, and protocols in Wyandotte County, including the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department, and the Wyandotte County’s Sheriff’s Office. The group will identify opportunities and appropriate vehicles to gather community inputs, collecting, cataloging, and distributing the information provided with law enforcement leadership, local officials, and the community. The Task Force is not a policy making body and will not make specific recommendations. Rather, it will serve as a conduit of information gathering and dissemination to law enforcement and the Unified Government for review and consideration.

 

Public Meetings

Public Meetings:

The Task Force’s objective is to help build and strengthen trust between the community and law enforcement by identifying issues, perceptions, and challenges to that trust that exist today.  The Task Force will accomplish this objective by creating awareness of these issues and providing a vehicle and forum through which this information will be distributed and shared with law enforcement, local officials, and the community as a whole. With a recent increase in local COVID-19 cases, it is necessary to conduct these conversations online via Zoom Facebook Live.  Video recordings will be available on the Unified Government’s Facebook, YouTube Channel, and UGTV (Spectrum channel 2 and Google Fiber channel 141).

Public Conversation # 1 – July 14, 4:00 – 6:00 PM
The Task Force’s first public conversation included a briefing by the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department on existing Community Policing efforts, as well as an update on the future use of body cameras.  Wyandotte County District Attorney Mark Dupree also provided a presentation to the group about his Office’s Community Integrity Initiative.  View the Task Force’s first public conversation on the Unified Government’s YouTube Channel.

Public Conversation #2 – July 27, 4:00 – 6:00 PM
You are invited to join the Task Force on Community and Police Relations for their second public conversation.  This meeting will include a presentation from the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department about Use of Force Guidelines & Law Enforcement Training.  View the Task Force’s second public conversation on the Unified Government’s YouTube Channel.

Public Conversation #3 – August 11, 4:00 - 6:00 PM
You are invited to join the Task Force on Community and Police Relations for their third public conversation.  This meeting will include presentations by concerned black clergy.  View the Task Force's third public conversation on the Unified Government's YouTube Channel.

Public Conversation #4 – September 1, 4:00 - 6:00 PM
You are invited to join the Task Force on Community and Police Relations for their fourth public conversation.  This meeting's topic is Restorative Justice and will include presentations from Monsignor Stuart Swetland, Donnelly College; Randy George, Village Initiative; and John Stapleton Jr., Stapleton & Assoc/Midwest ADR.  View the Task Force's fourth public conversation on the Unified Government's YouTube Channel.

Public Conversation #5 - October 6, 4:00 - 6:00 PM
You are invited to join the Task Force on Community and Police Relations for their fifth public conversation.  This meeting's topic is progress made/moving forward (Progreso Realizado/Avanzando).  To join this conversation online, follow the link below.  View the Task Force's fifth public conversation on the Unified Government's YouTube Channel

Videos

September 1 Task Force on Community & Police Relations Conversation #4

August 11 Task Force on Community & Police Relations Conversation #3

July 27 Task Force on Community & Police Relations Conversation #2

July 14 Task Force on Community & Police Relations Conversation #1

Welcome Message from Mayor Alvey & Commissioner Johnson

For additional information, contact Gordon Criswell with the Unified Government at gcriswell@wycokck.org, or Maureen Mahoney with Mayor Alvey’s office at mmahoney@wycokck.org.

Key Dates
September 1, Public Conversation #4