June 4, 2020
To our UMass Amherst Community,
The leadership of UMPD and the local campus leaders of the New England Police Benevolent Association and International Brotherhood of Police Officers are united in condemning in the strongest possible terms, the wrongful actions as well as the failure to intervene that led to the death of Mr. Floyd. We are angry and deeply frustrated that the actions of those former officers have stained the good work of officers across the country who work hard to build relationships in their communities.
We understand that relationships between police and many communities in the United States are broken and that trust has been lost. We know that it is critical for us to understand the systemic failings that have created these fractures. As part of our commitment to the communities we serve, we explicitly prohibit and train against racial profiling. We are also continuing to train our officers in implicit bias awareness, police legitimacy and procedural justice, trauma informed practices, de-escalation, and crisis intervention.
UMPD deeply values the positive daily interactions that we have with our campus and local communities. We care about how we carry out our duties and responsibilities, and also how we engage in our individual interactions. We are committed to building trust and confidence so as to counter negative stereotypes that people may have about the police. This will require listening compassionately to the voices of our community and committing to productive, transformative dialogue and committing to do everything in our power to contribute to police and judicial reform. In the coming months there will be opportunities for continuing and deepening the conversation about the role of community policing as well as gathering concrete recommendations to guide our future steps.
We remain committed to being your UMPD.
The University of Massachusetts Police Department