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Guest Opinion | CICOPP and POP Call for Open and Transparent Applicant Process for Community Police Oversight Commission

Published on Monday, October 19, 2020 | 1:00 am

On Monday, Oct. 19, the City Council will be deliberating on the process for appointing members of the Community Police Oversight Commission. Mayor Terry Tornek and Councilmember John Kennedy, chair of the council’s Public  Safety Committee, are recommending the City Council direct the city attorney to prepare a resolution establishing a process for appointing members of the community to the new commission.  

The Coalition for Increased Civilian Oversight (CICOPP) and Pasadenans Organizing for Progress  (POP) affirm our previous demands that the selection of Community Police Oversight  Commission members must be a transparent process that involves individuals most impacted by police violence.  

To ensure active engagement by members of the most impacted members of our community, CICOPP and POP propose the creation of a panel composed of representatives from community-based organizations who will interview and nominate the applicants for three community-appointed commission members.  

CICOPP and POP also propose that each candidate nominated to fill the community positions as well as each candidate nominated by the mayor and City Council members should go through a City Council confirmation process that is entirely transparent and includes a public meeting.  

At a minimum, the following criteria must be considered when assessing applicants for all 11 commissioner positions. The goal is to ensure the Community Police Oversight  Commission, as a whole, adequately represents and possesses these qualities.  

  • Representing one or more of the following communities: Black, Indigenous, Persons of  Color, immigrant, refugee, LGBTQ, youth, faith, business, and other communities reflecting the overall demographics of Pasadena residents. 
  • Representing or demonstrating knowledge of the experiences of limited-English speakers, persons experiencing homelessness/those of us without homes, and/or people living with mental illness and/or substance use disorders. 
  • Experience in law enforcement oversight; police accountability; community engagement and organizing; training or experience in organizational change and social justice; training or experience in disciplines important to the Pasadena Oversight Commission and community.  
  • Demonstrated experience in working effectively with diverse populations.  
  • Demonstrated ability to develop consensus and create positive change in organizations.  
  • Demonstrated knowledge of policing policies and procedures, including those related to searches and seizures, collection and release of information, use of force, and professional accountability.  
  • Demonstrated experience in dealing with different aspects of the criminal justice system.  
  • Demonstrated experience in creating — and the ability to articulate — firm ideas for creating a  culture of policing that is community-based, effective, and constitutional.  
  • Understanding of local government and how city departments function in relation to one another.  
  • Understanding of how police officer associations impact policing, from a legal, management,  or employee’s perspective.  
  • Articulates the vision and role of the Community Police Oversight Commission and describes how its work might positively impact all of Pasadena’s residents.  
  • Demonstrated experience in evaluating programs and measuring outcomes.
  • Demonstrated leadership in the community.

Individuals who have a felony or misdemeanor record should not be excluded from applying to serve on the Community Police Oversight Commission.  

In addition to training prescribed in the ordinance, we recommend the following training:  

  • Crossroads Anti Racism –
  • Live Above The Hype (Trauma-Informed Training).

Florence Annang, Kimberly Douglas, Kristen Ockershauser and Ed  Washatka for the Coalition for Increased Civilian Oversight of Pasadena  Police (CICOPP) and Pasadenans Organizing for Progress (POP)

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