By Stephanie Malench
The Collinsville City Council voted to approve a resolution adopting the Ten Shared Principles Agreed to By the NAACP Illinois State Conference and the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police at their July 28 meeting held at Gateway Center. Collinsville joins Edwardsville, Glen Carbon, Fairview Heights, and O’Fallon in adopting these Ten Shared Principles.
The 10 Principles were developed with collaboration and dialogue at four World Cafes across the state beginning in May of 2016 and the principles were announced on March 22, 2018. Police departments have been adopting them ever since. Each Cafe lasted about 3 hours and included three rounds of dialogue in small groups.
Collinsvillle Police Chief Steve Evans said the Ten Shared Principles “are principles we believe we adhere to already” and “to build trust we really need to affirm that we believe in these principles.”
The Ten Shared Principles are as follows.
We value the life of every person and consider life to be the highest value.
All persons should be treated with dignity and respect. This is another foundational value.
We reject discrimination toward any person that is based on race, ethnicity, religion, color, nationality, immigrant status, sexual orientation, gender, disability, or familial status.
We endorse the six pillars in the report of the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing. The first pillar is to build and rebuild trust through procedural justice, transparency, accountability, and honest recognition of past and present obstacles.
We endorse the four pillars of procedural justice, which are fairness, voice (i.e., an opportunity for citizens and police to believe they are heard), transparency, and impartiality.
We endorse the values inherent in community policing, which includes community partnerships involving law enforcement, engagement of police officers with residents outside of interaction specific to enforcement of laws, and problem-solving that is collaborative, not one-sided.
We believe that developing strong ongoing relationships between law enforcement and communities of color at the leadership level and street level will be the keys to diminishing and eliminating racial tension.
We believe that law enforcement and community leaders have a mutual responsibility to encourage all citizens to gain a better understanding and knowledge of the law to assist them in their interactions with law enforcement officers.
We support diversity in police departments and in the law enforcement profession. Law enforcement and communities have a mutual responsibility and should work together to make a concerted effort to recruit diverse police departments.
We believe de-escalation training should be required to ensure the safety of community members and officers. We endorse using de-escalation tactics to reduce the potential for confrontations that endanger law enforcement officers and community members; and the principle that human life should be taken on as a last resort.
Madison County NAACP President John Cunningham, who was at the City Council signing with Francine Nicholson, president of the St. Clair County NAACP, said he hopes to work with the Maryville and Troy Police Departments in the near future.