The police force, a governing body charged with protecting the rights of local citizens, is constantly under scrutiny. Their encounters with members of the communities in which they serve are analyzed and criticized to ensure members of the police force are not abusing their powers and are in fact making use of the power they have to impact people’s lives.
But police officers are human too, notes PCS Bail Bonds, and can make misjudgments on how situations are to be handled. This can be seen in the case of Fort Worth Police Chief Jeff Halstead, who has been at the center of community criticism and controversy since his taking the position approximately five years ago. His force has been accused of mistreating black officers and the beginning of his tenure was ridiculed for a raid on a gay bar and the comments that Chief Halstead made afterwards.
The current issue, which has actually been an ongoing concern, is diversity within the Fort Worth police force. Despite a heavy presence of Latino and Black people within Fort Worth, the police force still remains primarily made up of white officers.
After an executive session on September 9, city officials are “enacting an action plan to guarantee diversity and fairness within the department’s ranks.” The 3-E Action Plan includes “efforts toward recruiting a more diverse workforce, ongoing outreach to minority communities and six annual meetings with both the African-American and Hispanic officers’ associations.” Multicultural training will also be mandatory for all police employees.
Mayor Betsy Price, along with City Manager David Cooke and Police Chief Halstead, all support this plan, with Cooke claiming that his office will be monitoring the progress of the plan’s application. Providing bail bonds in Fort Worth and being in regular communication with the Fort Worth police force, PCS Bail Bonds is aware of this issue and also supports increased diversity.
The goal is to have a police force that is more reflective of the Fort Worth community they serve. Increased diversity should lead to increased understanding of other cultures and potentially new ideas on how to more effectively engage with and protect the community.
PCS Bail Bonds supports increased diversity for the reasons previously mentioned. We also hope that the inclusion of Latino and Black men and women on the police force will encourage young people of similar race to follow suit and become the future of law enforcement.
But as it stands right now, diversity within the police force is still an issue. And as a bail bonds agent in Fort Worth, we at PCS Bail Bonds see firsthand that this is something our community can improve upon.
Russell, J., “Fort Worth City Council backs Police Chief Halstead,” DallasVoice.com, September 12, 2014; http://www.dallasvoice.com/fort-worth-city-council-backs-police-chief-halstead-10179458.html.