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PNS Daily Newscast - March 20, 2019 


Joe Biden tells supporters he intends to run in the 2020 presidential election. Also, on the Wednesday rundown: A landmark bill in California would ban toxic chemicals in cosmetics; and groups sue to end disease-spreading elk feeding.

Daily Newscasts

Ending Racial Profiling: Where’s the Plan?

May 19, 2008

Portland, OR – It has been exactly two years since Portland had its first "listening session" between citizens and police about racial profiling--the practice of police stopping or searching members of ethnic minorities more often than whites. The city has promised an action plan to make police more sensitive to racial issues.

Today, the citizens' group Oregon Action is presenting petitions to the mayor, asking why they haven't seen the plan yet.

Oregon Action board member Sheila Warren, who is co-chair of the Community Racial Profiling Committee, says the lack of momentum has been frustrating.

"We had trust, we have a lot of faith, and we were just excited that it was even on the docket--that the City of Portland recognized that there is a problem. And so, we're very disappointed. To me, it's not that hard to come up with a plan."

According to Warren, several deadlines have come and gone, and after the petitions are handed over today, the group has no choice but to wait again for answers. The group is hoping for a training program that can be used by police to improve race relations, not only in Portland, but in other Oregon communities and elsewhere.

"It's highly important. It speaks for itself. I don't know of any other city that has proclaimed and declared that there is racial profiling. This is a landmark thing, so I can see people watching us, all over the United States."

An analysis of Portland area traffic stops showed that African-American drivers are more than 3.4 times as likely to be stopped as white drivers, but a consultant for the police union has said the data is inconclusive.

Chris Thomas, Public News Service - OR