Arlington, VA – Thanks to Sean Maher, from the City Of Oakland’s press information office, this media release has the details behind last night’s Oakland City Council meeting and the vote on the contract to hire the controversial William Bratton as a consultant to the Oakland Police Department:
The vote on the Strategic Policy Partnership contract, which includes the consulting services of Bill Bratton, was approved by a 7-1 vote at about 2:10 a.m., with an amendment emphasizing that whatever policies follow from the consulting will not permit any racial profiling. Over the past week, both police Chief Howard Jordan and Mayor Jean Quan had stated clearly and strenuously that racial profiling will not be tolerated in the police department.
Mayor Quan praised the hard work of Chief Jordan and City Administrator Deanna Santana in pulling the contract together. Quan was present for the meeting – including the several hours of public comment – and urged the Council to approve the contract, following up on an open letter she sent to the City Council last week. That letter is attached to this message for reference; it includes the following quotes:
“The goals of fighting crime and improving police relationships in our communities are not at odds with each other. Instead, they are crucial to one another, and one cannot be done without the other.
I believe Bratton can help us improve the department on both fronts, but in the end, the responsibility for OPD policy is not his: it is Chief Jordan’s and mine.
Bratton’s job (will) be to give Chief Jordan the best information and the smartest advice he can. Chief Jordan’s job will be to consider that advice and take accountability for the final decisions about our police department and how to make best use of the limited resources on hand. And my job, together with the City Council and City Administrator Deanna Santana, will be to find more ways to build those resources.”
The letter also noted that, while Bratton can be a controversial figure, the ACLU in Los Angeles reported a dramatic drop in police-related complaints during Bratton’s tenure as chief of the Los Angeles Police Department.