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Westchester Organizations Push To Have Police Hiring Bill Put To Vote

Members from several Westchester County organizations gathered to push lawmakers to vote on a bill that would help expand the hiring pool for local police forces.
Members from several Westchester County organizations gathered to push lawmakers to vote on a bill that would help expand the hiring pool for local police forces. Photo Credit: Contributed

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- A diverse group of institutions and supporters gathered to support putting a bill that would help local police departments expand the pool of hiring candidates on June 15.

Bill A02804b would remove an impediment which would increase the hiring of minorities and women, without lowering standards, in the police force within New York State.

“In 2009, The Westchester County Chiefs of Police Assn. endorsed a bill that had the same intent of A2804. Our goal then is the same as it is now," Pelham Police Chief, Joe Benefico said in a statement. "Create the opportunity for police departments to continue to hire locally, but provide them an avenue to expand their pool of candidates by allowing their communities to hire from a local civil service list and a countywide civil service list, in an effort to interview from a higher number of qualified and more diverse candidates.”

Groups that participated in the event held at the Bronx 50th Precinct were:

  • New York State Chiefs of Police Association
  • Westchester County Chiefs of Police Association
  • MLK Institute of Non Violence of Westchester
  • New York Chapter, Blacks in Law Enforcement of America
  • Westchester Rockland Guardian Association
  • NAACP, Greenburgh Chapter
  • Westchester County Home Owners’ Coalition

“Local law enforcement agencies that better reflect our diverse communities will change perceptions, create opportunities for beneficial interaction, and generate pathways towards peaceful communities,” Rov. Doris Dalton, director of the MLK Insitute of Westchester said.

Members of the coalition hope to have the bill put to a vote before the legislative session comes to a close this week.

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