CHICAGO–(ENEWSPF)–June 26, 2017. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel today joined Chicago Police Department (CPD) Superintendent Eddie Johnson to welcome the first group of police recruits to attend cultural awareness training at The DuSable Museum of African American History. As part of the Mayor’s commitment to police reform and as outlined in the Superintendent’s Next Steps for Reform released earlier this year, this new curriculum is a demonstration of a commitment to comprehensive overhaul of training for new recruits that reflects the city’s values.
“This city is committed to supporting our officers and giving them the training they need to succeed at every stage of their careers, and a part of that is knowing that Chicago’s diversity is our greatest strength,” Mayor Emanuel. “This partnership with DuSable is an important step on our road to reform and rebuilding critical relationships with residents.”
For 56 recruits from the senior class at the CPD Education and Training Division, the trainings will include the history of African Americans in Chicago, cultural competency and awareness, procedural justice and implicit bias. The course is designed to strengthen constitutional policing and procedural justice practices, and supports the Department’s efforts to rebuild trust between the community and police.
“As we make good on our efforts to implement meaningful reform at CPD, it is important that new recruits understand the diversity of the residents we serve,” said Superintendent Johnson. “We also need them to see the strength and resiliency embedded in African American culture, the opportunity for a powerful partnership where it is most needed, built upon trust, respect and our shared humanity.”
The day of training will include curated tours of DuSable’s permanent exhibit, “Freedom and Resistance,” which chronicles significant events and people from enslavement through the Civil Rights era. DuSable Museum’s resident historian, Professor Christopher Reed, will discuss with recruits how the famous ‘city of neighborhoods’ came to be, with an exploration of cultural migration and historic discrimination. In addition, Story Catchers Theater, a Chicago-based youth development arts organization, will share real stories of incarcerated youth and explore the impact of those experiences within the criminal justice system on their lives.
“We are pleased to host the latest class of CPD recruits,” said Museum President and CEO Perri Irmer. “As the nation’s oldest institution preserving the stories of African Americans, DuSable Museum is the ideal place to raise the consciousness of anyone interested in understanding the historical journey that frames the current state of Chicago’s predominately Black neighborhoods.”