FREE e-Newsletter
Important News - Hot Topics
Get them Now!

Autonomous Robots Prevent Crime

Ask The Expert

Stacy Dean Stephens

VP Marketing & Sales

Criminal Justice Degrees - Columbia Southern University
Let Columbia Southern University help you change your community with an MBA in...

Product News

Gainesville PD Receives Safety Grant from the Spirit of Blue Foundation and Dunkin' Donuts

February 26, 2015  | 

The Spirit of Blue Foundation announced today that it has awarded a Safety Training Grant to the Gainesville (Fla.) Police Department to obtain valuable police/youth dialogue training. The focus of this training is building understanding and cooperation between the city's minority youth and the 302 police officers who serve the Gainesville community. The River Phoenix Center for Peacebuilding, also based in Gainesville, will be conducting the training sessions and will work with the GPD to develop a comprehensive curriculum allowing the training program to be replicated by law enforcement agencies in communities all across the country.

"When we sit down in a secure environment and have open dialogue, it allows us all to learn more about each other and see why each other operates in a certain way," said Chief Tony Jones of the Gainesville Police Department, who frequently reminds his officers and the public that the police cannot arrest their way out of crime. "We saw an issue with how minority youth were contacted and arrested. Instead of sitting back and ignoring the issue, we decided not only to talk about it, but to do something about it. This grant will allow us to do even more. While you may not see a piece of equipment purchased with these funds, you'll see a tangible return – a city with a great relationship with all of its community."

The $6,375 grant was funded primarily through a generous donation from The Dunkin' Donuts & Baskin-Robbins Community Foundation who partners with organizations to support public safety officers, in addition to a number of other initiatives to build safer communities. The Harbour Family Trust, a private fund formed in memory of late Detroit automotive industry veteran James Harbour, also contributed to the funding of the grant.

"There is a lot of value in granting safety equipment to law enforcement officers, which is what we typically do," stated Ryan T. Smith, Executive Director of the Spirit of Blue Foundation. "But we are excited to enable this Police/Youth Dialogue training program because it is inherently proactive, building a sense of emotional intelligence between these two groups who interact on a daily basis. If we can prevent conflict from occurring in those interactions then we have helped to create a safer environment from the outset."

Statistics released by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund showed 126 law enforcement officers lost their lives in the line of duty in 2014, an increase of 24% from the previous year. 50 of those fatalities were firearm related, a 56% increase. The reality of these statistics, and the increasing number of underfunded law enforcement agencies across the country, fuel the Spirit of Blue safety grant initiative.

The Spirit of Blue Foundation actively encourages the public at large to honor and appreciate law enforcement officers who serve to protect our communities. By supporting the Spirit of Blue Foundation, the public can make an impact in the lives of law enforcement officers every day. To learn more about the Spirit of Blue, or make a donation, visit www.spiritofblue.com.

Request more info about this product / service / company


Comments (1)

Displaying 1 - 1 of 1

plato's playdough @ 3/1/2015 4:06 AM

Would anyone have preferred to delete the DUNKIN' DOUGHNUTS affiliation?

Too bad the grant didn't come from Taser International, or Rock River Arms.

Join the Discussion





POLICE Magazine does not tolerate comments that include profanity, personal attacks or antisocial behavior (such as "spamming" or "trolling"). This and other inappropriate content or material will be removed. We reserve the right to block any user who violates this, including removing all content posted by that user.

Other Recent News

Video: Actor Dean Cain Sworn in as Idaho Reserve Deputy
Actor Dean Cain — whose acting roles include Superman — was recently sworn in as a reserve...
Trial Begins for Ex-cop Accused of Rape at Massachusetts Police Station
A former Massachusetts police officer accused of a 2016 rape in a station holding cell...
Washington to Allow Non-citizens to Apply for Police Jobs
Legislators in Washington state passed Senate Bill 6145, which changes the qualifications...
Georgia Officer Busted in Drug Raid Resigns
Atlanta Police Officer Iris Rowe tendered her resignation on Wednesday after she was among...

Police Magazine