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Achieving Equity in Law Enforcement

Recorded on: November 14, 2014

Air date: November 17, 2014

Achieving Equity in Law Enforcement

Guest Speakers: Pete Kerns, Chief, Eugene Police Department; Tim Doney, Chief, Springfield Police Department; Carolyn McDermed, Chief, University of Oregon Police Department; Tom Turner, Lane County Sheriff; and Lang Hinkle, Master Sergeant, Oregon State Police

Balancing the demands of equity and efficiency can pose a challenge for law enforcement agencies, especially when funding is tight and staffing seems inadequate. Leaders from five local law enforcement agencies will describe the training, policies, and practices they use to improve the equity and the efficiency we all value from our public agencies. They will point out some of the ways competing goals can affect enforcement decisions; and they will describe the internal checks and balances they use to analyze overall performance and make necessary changes.

The law enforcement panel will address questions on the minds of many people in our community: What are good ways to ensure that every police contact results in improving safety? How do sworn officers learn to respond to active or potentially troublesome behavior without allowing unconscious biases shape their actions? How do they monitor their own performance so that self-correction becomes the norm? How do officers learn to avoid danger to themselves while giving due consideration to the possible meaning of the events they observe?

With five agencies represented in the City Club program, agencies with overlapping scopes of authority can describe how they coordinate their practices and policies so that the whole community experiences thoughtful and effective policing.

Pete Kerns assumed his position as Chief of Police for Eugene in October 2008. In more than 30 years with the EPD, he has served in a wide variety of positions. Throughout his career, Kerns has worked with community groups to promote safety through neighborhood-based community policing.

Tim Doney is a long time Oregonian who joined the Springfield Police as Chief in 2013. He was previously with the Medford Police Department for more than 25 years and served as a patrol officer, detective, patrol sergeant, detective sergeant, lieutenant, and deputy police chief.

Tom Turner began as a Reserve Officer for the City of Eugene in 1981. After 23 years with the EPD, he moved to the Lane County Sheriff’s office. He was elected Sheriff in 2012.

Carolyn McDermed has 30 years of law enforcement experience, beginning as an officer in San Diego. She was with the EPD for 17 years before the UO hired her as its Assistant Chief of Public Safety in 2008. In 2013, she was appointed Chief.

Lang Hinkle began his career with the Oregon State Police in 1988 assigned to the Patrol Division in Oakridge. He was promoted to Patrol Sergeant at the Springfield Patrol Office in 1995, became a Sergeant First Class in 2010, and a Master Sergeant in 2011.

Following their presentations, the law enforcement panelists will take part in a Q&A session with City Club members.

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