Community hopes programs with Birmingham Police prevent violence in neighborhoods

Published: Aug. 11, 2022 at 6:03 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 11, 2022 at 8:18 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Residents in the Druid Hills Neighborhood are willing to do anything to keep their community safe.

Charlie Williams is the President of the Neighborhood Association. He said the community has a good working relationship with the police, but that relationship works both ways.

“Particularly with our kids where it’s not cool to say anything if you see something happen. We need to change that.”

Even with the working relationship, Williams said there are still some policies that just don’t make sense to him.

“What needs to happen from a leadership standpoint, particularly with our new police chief, is that we need to look at some of the policies and regulations that are preventing our officers from looking at ways to investigate some crimes. We feel that from a neighborhood standpoint, [they] just don’t get the importance we feel they should get,” said Williams.

The answer to the confusion may be in Birmingham’s past. The Birmingham Police Citizen Academy was a nine-week program that gave community members an inside look to better understand police policies.

While it is no longer active, Williams said bringing it back could help prevent the violence.

“Those are the types of programs that break down barriers where we can communicate more freely with our police officers.”

The city said it has plans to roll out community programs in the near future.

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