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Appleton Police Chief seeking out input from community in new advisory board

Local News

(WFRV) – Appleton Police Chief Todd Thomas spoke with WFRV Local 5 Thursday morning about The Police Chief’s Community Advisory Board to provide a forum for community members on law enforcement practices.

Chief Thomas says that, in the past, community boards have come together to assist the department in discussing a policy or a strategic plan.

“We haven’t had one that’s standard and ongoing of the same group of community members involved and advising the chief on policy decisions and procedures and being a sounding board for the chief,” Chief Thomas explained.

According to a release from Appleton Police:

The Community Advisory Board will act as a resource for the Chief of Police in the Chief’s formation of strategies, development of community policing concepts and programs, and to help increase public awareness about the activities of the agency. It will be a resource for the Chief that will leverage the experiences of our citizens to benefit the department and the community. The primary purpose of the Chief’s Advisory Board is to provide a forum with community members regarding law enforcement practices within the community and is comprised of a diverse cross-section of community members of the City of Appleton. The creativity and experiences of all members drives the board and reflects the community views, providing for integration of community viewpoints into police department planning and strategies.

Related: Appleton Police report increase in overdose deaths since April

The rotating membership of the board will consist of at least 15, but not more than 25, volunteer citizens from throughout the community, the majority being adults but may also include high school students, who represent a range of interests and experiences. Appleton Police say efforts will be made to select members from diverse backgrounds, including business, education, non-profit, public relations, faith community, government and more.

“We’re going to look for people from across the community, not just the people that we normally hear, the normal stakeholders. We want citizens, some of these young people that have been involved in the protests that have a strong voice and a lot to say. I want them on my advisory board so that I can bounce ideas off of them and get a better feel for what the community wants.”

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