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Broome Co. police review task force holds listening session

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(WBNG) -- On Wednesday the Broome County Police Review Task Force held a public zoom listening session.

The goal was to hear the thoughts and concerns of residents surrounding the Broome County Sheriff's Office, Deputy Sheriff's, and detectives.

Back in June, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed an executive order requiring local governments to perform a comprehensive review of current police force deployments, strategies, policies, procedures, and practices.

Governments also need to develop a plan to improve and adopt said plan by April 1, 2021.

At the listening session there was some confusion and frustration from residents who participated that the County Jail was not a designated discussion topic for this zoom session. There were also complaints that the nature of the zoom did not allow for open dialogue with the citizens participating.

One of the topics discussed by multiple people involved how the Sheriff's Office addresses those struggling with mental health issues when they are called to a scene.

"A concern that I have is making sure that our Sheriff's and detectives have the training they need in order to recognize a mental health emergency in-which they have good training in de-escalation in crisis matters," said zoom participant Barbara Mullen.

Some of the other concerns brought up by community members include a call for increased transparency when it comes to FOIL requests, disappointment about surrounding the lack of representation on the task force from community groups, and the Three and a half minute speaking time allotted to participants.

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