Voices from the Edge on 02/03/11
Historic agreement or hollow victory? The city's $5 million contract with the Portland Police Bureau
Portland City Council ratified a three-year, $5 million contract with the Portland Policy Association this week. Mayor Sam Adams says "These are the most aggressive reforms we've seen in a generation." The agreement includes random drug testing and conditional acceptance of Independent Police Review authority to investigate officers in addition to a two percent wage increase with fitness and education incentives.
Police reform advocates, however, think the agreement reflects city council's unwillingness to press the bureau too hard. the Albina Ministerial Alliance has criticized the drug testing provisions for not including automatic testing for steroid use after an incident of force rather than at management's discretion on a case-by-case basis. The Fire Frashour campaign - named for the officer who fatally shot unarmed Aaron Campbell - believes the agreement fails to make it clear to officers that using wrongful force will mean at the very least putting their jobs on the line.
This week, Jo Ann and Dave will talk consider what impact - if any - the new agreement has on creating greater police accountability in Portland.
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Jo Ann Bowman is a former state legislator, former executive director of Oregon Action, and a long-time leader in the struggle for racial and economic justice. Dave Mazza is a freelance journalist and former editor of The Portland Alliance who has covered and been involved in Portland's civil rights, peace, labor and environmental movements
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