There will be a meeting on Thursday, June 29, at 6 pm, to hear public input on what community policing should look like in our community.
PHOTO: The CPARB Committee with consultant Brian Corr (center), who will be facilitating the listening session.
This will be an opportunity for folks to share their experiences and ideas on how the Community Policing Advisory Review Board can help improve transparency and build trust between the police department and members of the community. The meeting will be held at the multi-purpose room on the third floor at the Firehouse located at 130 River Street in Bennington.
The Community Policing Advisory Review Board, or CPARB, was created as the result of a recommendation by the Safety and Equity task force, a group charged by the Select Board to make recommendations for the establishment of such an advisory board. The CPARB was seated in June of 2022 and have had extensive training to assist them in their work. The CPARB meets monthly and information about their meetings can be found on the Town website at benningtonvt.org and search for CPARB.
Through the creation of the CPARB, the Town of Bennington, its Police Department and the Select Board are committed to working with the entire community to ensure safety, accountability, transparency, and trust and to move Bennington toward achieving its vision of becoming “a welcoming, engaged, inclusive, and resilient community where everyone, regardless of identity, shares in our vitality and benefits from an outstanding quality of life”.
There are around 200 police advisory boards currently in the USA, mostly in much larger cities and towns. What community policing looks like is unique to each community, and the CPARB is hosting this listening session to help them in their work. “We realize that speaking up about these types of experiences can be difficult for people to do, especially for some within our marginalized communities who may have a fear or distrust of the police” says CPARB Chair Kelly Carroll. “Our goal for this listening session is to be inclusive of all perspectives and to provide a safe place for the entire Bennington community to be able to have their voice heard.”
The meeting will be shown live on CAT TV. There will be an off camera podium for those who do not wish to appear on camera when sharing their thoughts, as well as provisions for anonymous written comments to ensure all feel safe when providing input. People watching on TV can use the comment form on the CPARB page of the town website to provide their input online in real time, or anytime.
Pizza and childcare will also be provided to participants. If you would like to sign up for childcare, please register using this link: https://operations.daxko.com/programs/redirector.aspx?cid=2245&pid=109365&sid=2200410
If you would like additional information, or you would like to participate but you have concerns, please contact the Chair of the CPARB, Kelly Carroll, at email@example.com