The fourth season of LRN’s Principled podcast kicked off with a special 30-minute episode that looks at how to encourage dialogue between police departments, companies and communities.
The episode features a discussion with Florence Chung, chief engagement officer at The Hetty Group, a public safety community engagement strategy firm.
“Policies and training can be thrown out the door when informal policies and training become stronger forces in everyday life within a department,” said Chung.
She spoke with LRN’s Ben DiPietro about seven potential root causes of police misconduct, which she lists as: poor training; hiring and recruitment issues; department policy issues; bad apples; police culture; politics; and systemic racism.
“At times we come up with maybe overly simplistic responses to what needs to be fixed or knee-jerk reactions to coming up with solutions that may not take into consideration these various layers and complexities within the roles of policing,” said Chung.
“On top of that, every one of the 18,000 independent police departments we have in this country are dealing with different combinations of these root causes, so when we look for solutions I think we need to take a thoughtful approach to address multiple areas because there’s just no silver bullet solution.”
Chung discussed the “thin blue line,” and why good police often remain loyal to colleagues that break the rules. “I think it’s complicated,” she said. “Sometimes it’s department policies that provide latitude for officers, so it’s tough to have them fired or prosecuted and sometimes it’s the police unions that make it challenging to holds officers accountable, and that gets into some politics.
The question becomes, how do we change police culture?
If there are new policies saying officers have a duty to intervene and call out other officers for misconduct, “how do we make sure cops feel protected from those repercussions so they aren’t shamed and are actually being applauded for calling each other out?” asked Chung.
With protests across the U.S. to fight racial inequality and discrimination, Chung made the case businesses can play a major role in facilitating an open dialogue between police forces and community members. In particular, companies have expertise in areas of change management, human resources, and other business skills police departments often lack.
The fourth season of Principled continues with an episode featuring Alison Taylor, executive director at Ethical Systems, a research collaboration on ethical culture housed in New York University's Stern School of Business. She discusses with DiPietro how the pandemic has impacted ethics, compliance, ESG, and corporate activism.
New episodes will be released every two other Tuesday, discussing topics such as how companies can help address racial injustice; the risks associated with climate change; and the need for empathy by companies during the pandemic.
Guests will include Louis Sapirman, chief ethics and compliance officer of Panasonic North America; compliance executive and board member Andrea Bonime-Blanc; and Stephen H. Weinstein, chief compliance officer and group general counsel at RenaissanceRe.
To listen and subscribe to Principled, please visit here, or check Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Spotify, Soundcloud, Stitcher, and Podyssey.
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