No matter where your allegiances lie, it’s undeniably been a rocky past few years for Americans’ — and especially minorities’ — relations to the police. Freddie Gray. Michael Brown. Eric Garner. The list of unarmed black men killed by the police goes on. In part because of the ability with social media to instantaneously broadcast violent mistreatment to the world, America has become more conscious of — and enraged at — police violence against black men.
Tonight, from 6:30p to 8:00p at the Nyack Center, the Orangetown Police Department is taking a noble step in forging trust with the local community. “The Orangetown Police Department is truly interested in the issue of trust and mistrust between the Police and the Nyack/Orangetown community and what – If anything – can be done to improve it,” read a press release statement.
The evening, put together by the Nyack Center, the Village of Nyack, VCS (the organization that brings the Undoing Racism Workshop to Rockland each year) and the Orangetown Police, is being referred to as a “police hearing.” Which is meant quite literally: Police will only listen. The Community is invited to speak.
“Police will listen and hear what is being said. This hearing will not be the answer – but perhaps a first step in a new way of communicating and respecting the community’s experience of the Police,” reads the statement. “The Nyack Center, the Village of Nyack, VCS and the Orangetown Police have hope. Now it is up to you, residents of Nyack and all of Orangetown, to come out and decide. Might we take this step – together?”