On Wednesday, June 4, PLEA was invited by Ann Malone to speak at the Devonshire Senior Center. Citizens, business owners, neighborhood associations, business associations, City prosecutors and courts personnel, various City services, City Council representatives, and police management were there to discuss The White Paper authored by Ann.
In regards to The White Paper, PLEA communicated following:
Citizens aren’t stupid – they’re smart and they care. The White Paper is evidence of this. The White Paper is clearly proactive and based upon common sense.
Citizens pay the bills. We know this because of a thing called taxes.
Citizens are the boss. We know this because of the vote they possess.
It’s encouraging to see a practical commitment from both the courts and the prosecutor’s office. It’s encouraging to see the courage, conviction, and commitment of the community.
During the last six years of the PLEA survey of our 2400 members, Phoenix Police Officers have shared with us their top 15 problems. The two that have been in the top three time and again have been – jail/manpower, jail/manpower, jail/manpower. PLEA agrees with The White Paper and the principles it espouses. Specifically, PLEA agrees that a commitment to civilianize the wagon/booking process is crucial.
We need our rank-and-file personnel to be police officers on the street, NOT jailers at Madison. Departments such as Glendale, Scottsdale, Tempe, Gilbert, Chandler, Mesa, and Peoria understand this principle. 1 hour is too much time at the jail; 2 to 4 hours is typical. Booking shouldn’t be a burden but a tool. We’re hopeful the wagon/booking process will be met with the same pro-active common sense standard found in The White Paper.