2016 has been a turbulent time for communities across the United States, and law enforcement officials are in the eye of the storm as our country grapples with race relations and the horror of violence by and against police officers.
Against this backdrop, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney is trying to make a difference. Talking inside Lancaster County’s Transformation Church in July, Chief Putney said Police officers are trying to reach out to the public because “it’s hard to hate up close.”
Healing Through Dialogue and Cross-Cultural Understanding
Chief Putney, an African American, is working to bring his officers “up close” to the many ethnic, racial, and cultural communities they serve in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg region. He believes in healing through dialogue and cross-cultural understanding. Go Global NC is proud to be partnering with Chief Putney to launch the inaugural Latino Initiative for Law Enforcement program in September 2016. The program is about building trust and improving public safety. Twenty-four police officers of all ranks from Mecklenburg and Union Counties will travel to Mexico with Go Global NC to better understand the Hispanic and Latino communities they serve. Today, nearly 12% of Mecklenburg County’s population is Hispanic. Chief Putney recognizes the challenges of changing demographics call for unique leadership.
You Can Support the Healing: Help Fund the Law Enforcement Video Project
We are seeking $25,000 to document the 2016 Latino Initiative for Law Enforcement program. Funding will cover the cost of a video production team’s travel, filming, editing, and distribution of the final 3- to 5-minute film.
The video project will allow us to continue the healing by:
- Documenting the impact of U.S.-Mexico officer-to-officer meetings.
- Sharing the power of reaching out to other cultures, because “it’s hard to hate up close.”
- Broadly distributing newly created materials to expand law enforcement leaders’ effort to reach across racial, national, ethnic, and cultural lines to build trust and improve community safety.