PORTLAND, OR – Portland Oregon has reportedly suffered $23 million in damages and customer loss due to violent nightly protests.
Rioters have converged nightly into downtown Portland, looting, vandalizing, and throwing projectiles at police. Politicians have none nothing but pander to the mob, and have so far not condemned this violence, save for a string of tweets from Mayor Ted Wheeler.
These attacks undermine public safety in our community, and they harm the very people and businesses we need to be lifting up.
I am grateful that no one has died in Portland, but other cities have not been so fortunate.
— Mayor Ted Wheeler (@tedwheeler) July 3, 2020
Now, Portland Police Association (PPA) is taking action. More on that in the second half of this article.
For over a month police have responded to criminal activity in downtown Portland and in other neighborhoods that has caused millions of dollars in damage and has threatened human life and safety. pic.twitter.com/bdEHYENfqr
— Portland Police (@PortlandPolice) July 8, 2020
Of the damage from the rioting, Deputy Chris Davis stated:
“There’s a very big difference between protests and the kind of mayhem that we’ve seen every night. … The Black Lives Matter movement is not violent. The story that we’re going to talk about today is about a small group of agitators that is attempting to hijack that message and use it as a cover for criminal activity.”
The protests are now in their sixth week. Protesters and some politicians were not happy with the use of tear gas used by police, but with the fairly large group of rioters growing in numbers, it’s unclear how they expect officers to control the group.
PPA President Daryl Turner discussed Wednesday at a press conference on FOX12 the need for peace for all residents of Portland, as well city safety as protests continue nightly.
“For forty days, thousands of people have poured out onto the streets calling out for change. For over 40 days a small number of people have hijacked those calls for social justice and use the cover for peaceful protest to burn and loot our city. It’s enough.
“Over half a million people call this city home. All of Portland deserves safety, security and a nonviolent platform to speak their minds.”
He also expressed his lack of confidence with the City Council:
“I have no confidence that city council will stand up for all of Portland.
“I have no confidence that the city will stop the rioting, the looting and protect the safety and livelihood of Portlanders.
“I have no confidence that the City Council will guide the PPB forward to a new era of policing that prioritizes community safety, equity, reform, and police funding.
“I have no confidence that City Council respects and supports its rank-and-file officers who work tirelessly to better our community.
“I have no confidence that City Council wants to be part of the solution that closes the divide between police and our communities.”
PPA Prez Daryl Turner didn't get a response from City Council after publishing a statement asking them to "defend Portland," so he penned another one: pic.twitter.com/IQX7T3cg3n
— Alex Zielinski (@alex_zee) July 8, 2020
According to KGW8 on June 17th, The Portland City Council has passed the 2020-21 budget 3-1 with plans to cut $15 million from the police bureau, taking away 84 positions. Current requests for defunding the department was at $50 million according to Unite Oregon.
City council Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty tweeted in a series of tweets yesterday:
“While the PPA came out this morning with a vote of no-confidence in City Council, I remain undeterred and continue to work on the change demanded by the public.”
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KATU2 received word from Hardesty in response to Portland Police Association’s (PPA) President Daryl Turner statements:
“This is not an unusual tactic when the public tide turns against the PPA or no longer allowing them to dominate the dialogue around policing and I will continue to work on change as the public demands and will not be intimidated by them.”
Turner’s “tactic” includes real solutions, which he wrote of in a press release:
“Our City Council should stand up and remind our communities that we must work to heal our City, not destroy it. Violence in our streets does not fix social and racial inequities. Burning down the Justice Center or destroying a federal courthouse brings no one justice.
“If City Council won’t stand up for Portland, we will. The PPA will be pushing two initiatives forward that are focused on community safety, police funding and reform, and internal and external racial equity.
The Portland Police Association announced its leadership voted unanimously that they have no confidence that the city will stop the rioting, looting, and vandalism that they have seen over the last 40 days.https://t.co/QO9pgOJOgO
— KATU News (@KATUNews) July 9, 2020
“Pastor Rev. J.W. Matt Hennessee and I will hold standing, quarterly roundtables that bring together police and our community.
We will be inviting members of the faith community, local community members, local law enforcement executives, local law enforcement officers, and local and state elected officials to attend.
The simple act of sitting together and talking can be profound. We want change. We want healing.
We want to ensure that we protect all Portlanders and give them a constructive, meaningful opportunity to speak openly and freely about social and racial justice. To get there, we must continue to engage with one another. We must continue to have difficult conversations.
“We won’t stop there. The words “police reform” don’t scare us. In my 29-year career, I have evolved daily as a person and as a police officer.
And every day, the Police Bureau has grown and improved as an organization. Now is the time to continue growing, improving, and evolving.
Defunding police in our City will not improve or reform the police. To reach those goals, we must invest in our Police Bureau.
To that end, the PPA has announced an eight-part reform platform based on reasonable and constructive efforts to improve policing services for all of Portland, available at www.fundpolicereform.org.”
As of the time of this writing, no politicians have responded to Turner’s statement.
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