Arbor Lodge Neighborhood Association Statement On Police Reform

On the eve of Juneteenth, 2020 the Arbor Lodge Neighborhood Association offers the following statement on police reform:

Arbor Lodge Neighborhood Association (ALNA) joins the many members in our larger community in calling for change in the way we are policed. We know that black lives matter. We know that systems need to change to benefit the marginalized. We know that white supremacy and white nationalism as well as the systems that support them are a threat to our community. We know that tangible actions need to be taken to address these issues.

ALNA stands with all those in our community calling for police reform. We support the work of black-lead organizations and civic leaders who are calling for a transformational change in the relationship between law enforcement and community members. This includes:

The Portland Police Reform Network’s call for a public, transparent negotiation process with the Portland Police Association  (PPA) on a forthcoming renewal of a labor agreement between the City of Portland and the PPA. The current collective bargaining agreement works directly against the goals of accountability and transparency. ALNA pledges our support, and to educate our neighbors so that we may be engaged and informed on the critical work to create a labor agreement that lives up to the values of fairness and racial justice.

The Portland African American Leadership Forum’s work to repurpose the role, and corresponding fiscal investment in law enforcement. We support PAALF’s call to eliminate units within the Portland Police whose violation of trust within the Black community cannot be repaired.

The work of our State Senator Lew Frederick, and the People of Color Caucus in the state legislature. We call upon the legislature to immediately pass into law Senator Frederick’s bill to address significant loopholes in police disciplinary protocols. As residents of Arbor Lodge we also call upon our State Representative Speaker Tina Kotek to utilize her influence to support the legislative priorities of the POC caucus lead by Senator Frederick. This includes the demand to shift prosecutorial responsibilities to the State Attorney General for any investigation regarding the use of deadly force by police.

The leadership of Portland City Commissioner Joanne Hardesty. ALNA expresses gratitude to Commissioner Hardesty for her wisdom, perspective and leadership. We support her policy goals, which largely coincide with the civic groups mentioned above but also includes a vision to cease the use of armed law enforcement to engage residents experiencing mental health crisis.

These actions represent a start, and not a destination. The reforms needed extend beyond the current calls for action from the organizations and elected officials listed above. ALNA pledges to do our part to improve understanding and communication between neighbors, and to provide a forum to educate and engage. Ultimately the reform that is needed must balance the rights and interests of the community at large, honorable members of law enforcement, and the victims of crime seeking redress. As a community we cannot let fear stand in the way of change. Above all else, police reform must be rooted in the core value that black lives matter.

In Solidarity,

Arbor Lodge Neighborhood Association

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