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Open Forum with Sheriff’s Department Helps Bridge Gaps

Pickup the Ball Teammates and other participants attended the second visit with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office tonight, an open forum designed to increase understanding between young men in the Fort Myers area and the police.  IMG_2079-1

Participants enjoyed pizza and some opening words from Sheriff Mike Scott before diving into the conversation.  The young men shared some of their past experiences with the police that have formed their overall impression of law enforcement.  The conversation was candid, and spanned topics from how young adults treat police, to how appearance factors into how they might be treated not only by the police, but by potential employers.

After the conversation, the officers presented a number of reverse role-play scenarios in which the Teammates took on the role of the police officers, and the officers acted out roles such as domestic disturbance and traffic stops.  IMG_2082-2

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Teammates gained a better understanding of what it is like to be a police officer.  A representative from the FBI attended the meeting, and shared his observations with the young men after the scenarios were over.  Heappreciated the willingness of the Teammates to come out an make an effort to better understand the police, and recognized the need for law enforcement to continually try to understand the youth and the community better.

The event facilitated better communication and understanding of the police and the community’s young men.  Captain Marceno, Pickup the Ball’s contact at the Sheriff’s Office, challenged the young men to approach any police officer when they see them in public and greet them in a spirit of friendship and teamwork.

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July 31, 2015 | Events, News | 0

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