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Blaine County conference aims to build trust between law enforcement and Hispanic community

Hispanic-liasion panel
Posted at 8:17 PM, Apr 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-08 22:17:14-04

HAILEY, Idaho — The Idaho Commission on Hispanic Affairs, Crisis Hotline Idaho and ProjectToolSuccess collaborated to host the Idaho Law Enforcement Conference in Blaine County.

ICHA Executive Director Margie Gonzalez said the conference is a good opportunity to partner with law enforcement and first responders.

“The whole intent is to bring our communities together and start building some bridges of communication,” Gonzalez said.

Participants attended implicit bias, cultural competency, cultural awareness and cultural sensitivity workshops.

Hailey Police Department Chief Steve England said the conference gives officers more cultural diversity tools.

“If you’re involved with your community, it just makes it that much easier for those community members to believe you and trust you,” England said.

Herbert Romero, co-founder of LatinUS Task Force said it is important that brown and black communities work with law enforcement to be proactive.

“Understanding the importance of coming together, sharing tools, and sharing best practices is very impactful,” Romero said.

Some examples include implementing a Hispanic-liaison officer or team, and being involved with community events.

“We continue to build those bridges and keep hopefully partnering with community members and community non-profits, and get that trust, keep building it,” England said. “Everyday we gotta get that trust.”