There will be ongoing opportunities to stay involved with both the City’s Community Safety Department as well as the Community Safety and Wellness Task Force. Here’s how you can connect:
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In 2021, the Durham Community Safety and Wellness Task Force was formed by the governing, elected bodies of the City of Durham, Durham County, and Durham Public Schools with a mission to recommend programs to enhance public safety and wellness that rely on community-based prevention, intervention, and re-entry services as alternatives to policing and the criminal legal system. More information about who is on the task force and ways to connect and follow what they’re doing can be found on their webpage.
The community-led Durham Community Safety and Wellness Task Force was formed by the governing bodies of the City of Durham City Council, Durham County Board of Commissioners, and the Durham Public Schools Board of Education in April 2021. The task force is completely independent from the City’s Community Safety Department, and is “charged with examining the public safety and wellness needs of Durham residents and communities, educating residents on existing safety and wellness resources, and providing recommendations for additional programs to enhance public safety and wellness that rely on community-based prevention, intervention, and re-entry services as alternatives to policing and the criminal legal system.” The role of the City’s Community Safety Department is solely to provide staff support to the Task Force, which may include answering research questions, collecting and analyzing data requested by Task Force members, and providing general administrative support. Community Safety staff do not set or drive the agenda of the Task Force. It is truly a community-led body to pursue alternative response strategies.
Your involvement in these town halls help shape the findings and recommendation of the Task Force as well as influence programmatic decisions that Community Safety Department may implement in an effort to create a safer Durham for all residents. Recordings and documentation will be made public on the City's website whenever possible.
Large events like these town halls may be hosted entirely online, using Zoom. You may participate from your computer or smart phone anywhere there is internet connection, and more than one person can join under one registration if you’d like to host your own gathering.
Need a device or reliable Internet connection? Check with your local Durham library to see about using one of their computers.
Additional information will be provided for events held in person.
To help encourage participation from as many residents as possible, 200 stipends are available on a first-come, first-served basis for those who request it. The $25 stipend is a modest incentive that we hope will increase accessibility to these engagements. Individuals who opt for the stipend will be contacted after the event by email, and arrangements will be made to get these incentives to participants as soon as possible.
As the City’s Community Safety Department explores opportunities for an increased sense of public safety in Durham, their staff have been learning a lot from other cities across the country. Representatives from three public safety response programs have generously offered their time to come speak with Durham residents about what they’re doing and how it’s going in their cities.
These events are not associated with, nor sponsored by, any candidates running for office nor their election campaigns. In fact, the bylaws for the Task Force requires that members be non-political when working with the Task Force. City of Durham staff have the same requirement, and will not speak or act on behalf of, or in opposition to, any candidate.