The Oscar Joel Bryant Foundation “represents African American officers and civilian employees who proudly serve the Los Angeles Police Department and other municipal agencies throughout the county.” The Foundation publishes a quarterly newsletter known as Pursuit. In the Second Quarter 2020 issue Foundation president Jody Stiger wrote that soon after this Spring’s protests over the killing of George Floyd began, he …
… began to receive numerous calls and texts from members and non-members regarding the harsh and callous comments being made about the Black Lives Matter movement, officers that decided to kneel with protesters, and countless other comments that were, quite frankly, racist and incongruent with the Department’s Core Values.
The Foundation’s board of directors surveyed the members, asking simply “were you witness to, or aware of, any concerning statements made by LAPD employees in regards to the recent protests and calls for police reform?”
Sixty percent of the respondents answered “yes,” and Stiger told Foundation members that the board had met with LAPD Chief Michel Moore “and expressed your concerns to him. I personally read some of the responses to him, and he was very disappointed with what you all witnessed in the workplace.”1
Stiger goes on to describe other actions the board planned to take to protect the safety and well-being of their members while on the job. Stiger’s entire statement is transcribed below. The Foundation’s members have a unique perspective on the question of what should be done about the LAPD. I haven’t heard as much about it as I have some others, and it makes the whole newsletter, which I was lucky to obtain a copy of, definitely worth reading.
WE HEAR YOUR VOICE
Shortly after our last newsletter, we all observed the death of George Floyd, as well as the numerous protests against police brutality across the nation. During those protests, many of you were on the front lines, protecting the community and businesses from looters, also protecting the rights of those who were protesting. Although most of the protests were peaceful, we all saw the criminal acts of some who decided to be opportunists and steal from businesses. We also saw those who wanted to harm us. Thankfully, we had no major injuries of officers and minimal damage to the communities we serve.
Shortly after the protests, I began to receive numerous calls and texts from members and non-members regarding the harsh and callous comments being made about the Black Lives Matter movement, officers that decided to kneel with protesters, and countless other comments that were, quite frankly, racist and incongruent with the Department’s Core Values. The board decided to send a survey to our members. Below you will find a chart with the results:
After receiving the results, we met with the Chief of Police and expressed your concerns to him. I personally read some of the responses to him, and he was very disappointed with what you all witnessed in the workplace. We then sent you all a letter detailing the results of the meeting and our future plans. Once you receive this newsletter, we most likely have already completed the first of hopefully numerous webinars that will help us strategically plan how we can ensure our voices are heard.
We are also meeting with command staff to make sure they are aware of some of the comments being made by other employees within the workplace. We demand that they take appropriate action when misconduct is brought to their attention. We are also working with ABLE (Association of Black Law Enforcement Executives) to make sure that you are all supported while in the workplace.
Finally, I want to thank all of you for trusting your board of directors. Your well-being is very important to us, and we want to make sure we are doing everything possible to support you. Please continue to reach out to us and keep us abreast of anything that you feel is worthy of a meaningful conversation. Take care and be safe!
Jody K. Stiger