Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian and Sheriff Laurie Smith are organizing the event, which runs from 11am to noon Sunday, and is open to anyone who wants to join the conversation.
“We can’t afford to just accept these tragedies as unavoidable or inevitable,”Simitian said. “I want to hear what the community thinks will make a difference—to improve relationships, keep folks safe, and avoid a similar tragedy here. The questions are simple. I suspect the answers are not.”
Late last year, after a series of high-profile cases of police shooting unarmed black men, Simitian proposed wearable cameras for county law enforcement. Still, he acknowledged, there’s “no easy answer, no quick fix” to healing the relationships between police and the communities they’re sworn to protect.
“That’s why I wanted to have this discussion,” Simitian said. “I want to make sure that after Ferguson fades from the headlines, our county is taking constructive steps to get it right.”
Silicon Valley Leadership Group CEO Carl Guardino, who hosts the “CEO Show” on KLIV radio, will moderate the discussion much like a radio show.
Other panelists include retired judge and San Jose Independent Police Auditor LaDoris Cordell, Deputy District Attorney Johnny Gogo and Assistant Professor of Psychology at Stanford Dr. Jennifer Eberhardt.
“Effective law enforcement requires those of us in uniform to earn and keep the trust of the people we serve,” Sheriff Smith said. “This is a conversation that every community around the country should be having, and I hope people take advantage of this event and join in.”
To participate in the telephone town hall, call 855.866.6313.