FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 10/7/2013
Councilmember Bruce A. Harrell
Council seeks candidates for the Office of Professional Accountability Review Board
Seattle – Council is seeking candidates for the Office of Professional Accountability (OPA) Review Board. The Review Board serves the City’s police accountability system and works closely with the civilian OPA Director and the civilian OPA Auditor.
The OPA Review Board recommends best practices for reform with regard to police accountability oversight. There are four open positions on the seven-member Board. The Board will also work with the 15-member Community Police Commission (CPC) to assist in the reform efforts embodied in the Settlement Agreement and Memorandum of Understanding instituted by the Department of Justice.
Members of the OPA Review Board should possess the following qualifications and characteristics:
- A commitment to and knowledge of the need for and responsibilities of law enforcement, as well as the need to protect basic constitutional rights of all affected parties;
- A history of demonstrated leadership experience and ability;
- A reputation for integrity and professionalism;
- The ability and experience to work with diverse groups and individuals with differing perspectives;
- The ability to collaborate with complainants, departmental personnel, and the residents of the City;
- The ability to work effectively under pressure in stressful situations; and,
- A commitment to the purposes and roles of civilian oversight as defined in the Seattle Municipal Code.
“It is an important moment for the City’s civilian oversight board” said Councilmember Bruce Harrell, chair of the Public Safety, Civil Rights, and Technology committee. “As we move forward with the implementation of the Department of Justice Settlement Agreement and work of the Community Police Commission, the OPA Review Board has a significant opportunity to help transform the police department into a learning organization that performs effective, constitutional policing. The board members are critical in the public outreach and transparency of police conduct and their work is a tremendous value to the city.”
Additional responsibilities of the OPA Review Board include reviewing the handling process for police accountability complaints, holding community outreach events to receive community feedback, and researching national trends to determine effective and innovative measures in the area of police accountability and civilian law enforcement oversight. The OPA Review Board delivers its findings and recommendations to the City Council twice a year. Additional information about the position is posted online: (http://www.seattle.gov/council/oparb/default.htm)
Interested candidates should deliver a resume, cover letter, and the names and contact information of three references by 5 p.m. on Friday, November 1st to Councilmember Bruce Harrell by email (firstname.lastname@example.org), by fax (206-684-8587; provide cover memo with Attn: Bruce Harrell) or by mail to:
Councilmember Bruce Harrell
Seattle City Council
P.O. Box 34025
Seattle, WA 98124-4025