U.S. Conference of Mayors President Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson Commends President Obama on His Commitment to Strengthening Police-Community Relations

May 18, 2015, 16:08 ET from The U.S. Conference of Mayors

WASHINGTON, May 18, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- U.S. Conference of Mayors President Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson today issued the following statement on the report from President Obama's announcements in Camden today:

"The nation's mayors commend President Obama for his remarks in Camden today, which demonstrate his strong commitment to improving policing in America and to strengthening the relationship between the police and the communities they serve. The specific actions he is already taking – including the White House Police Data Initiative, the Community Policing Grants, the Body-Worn Camera Tool Kit, and the new policies and procedures governing the acquisition of equipment by police departments and other law enforcement agencies – show how serious he is about doing this now and doing this right.

"We also commend the President for issuing the final report of his Task Force on 21st Century Policing. The Task Force produced an excellent report and a comprehensive set of common-sense recommendations that, as the President said, 'can serve as a blueprint for building trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve while enhancing public safety.'

"We are especially pleased that it includes many of the recommendations developed by the Conference of Mayors working group of mayors and police chiefs, which I appointed in November and which presented its report to the President's Task Force leaders on January 22 during our annual Winter Meeting in Washington.

"The Conference of Mayors is honored to be among the organizations that the President announced today will be working with the Administration to implement the Task Force's recommendations.

"When the interim report came out March 2 we urged the Administration, mayors and their police departments, state and local law enforcement agencies to move quickly to implement its recommendations. While we know this is already happening, we also know there is much work to do, as recent events in Baltimore have shown. Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake has taken decisive steps to reform policing practices and hold officers accountable for misconduct. At the same time it is important to remember, as Mayor Rawlings-Blake so eloquently said, that the vast majority of police officers serve their communities with pride, courage, honor, and distinction.

"Again, let me say that we appreciate the leadership that President Obama and the U.S. Department of Justice have shown. We also appreciate the substantial effort made by the co-chairs – Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey and George Mason University Professor Laurie Robinson – and the members of the President's Task Force, and by COPS Office Director Ron Davis, who served as Executive Director, and his staff. The Conference of Mayors stands ready to continue to work with the President and his Administration to strengthen police-community relations in our cities."

The U.S. Conference of Mayors is the official nonpartisan organization of cities with populations of 30,000 or more. There are nearly 1400 such cities in the country today, and each city is represented in the Conference by its chief elected official, the mayor. Like us on Facebook at facebook.com/usmayors, or follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/usmayors.

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SOURCE The U.S. Conference of Mayors