In the wake of the unnecessary and unsettling arrests during our Pride celebrations, I heard the community’s calls for justice and am proud of the way we responded. In a nation quick to find division and to react with rhetoric, I was able to bring law enforcement and community members together to have open and productive dialogue. As Mayor, my ultimate goal is to build a community where every person feels safe, welcome and protected and I’m proud that we are taking important steps forward.
Immediately after the incident, we gathered LGBTQ+ community leaders, the District Attorney’s office, the Sheriff’s department and our community safety department to listen and truly hear all sides. I’m proud that this has resulted in continuing dialogue, including an ongoing LGBTQ+ advisory group, quarterly meetings between the Sheriff and the transgender community, and increased training standards within the sheriff’s department.
While the arrests themselves were a horrible reminder of the work that remains, progress doesn’t happen without communication and open minds. I hope our swift action and continued leadership on this issue can serve as a roadmap in a country that is increasingly divided. When we all sit together in community and find common solutions, hate will not win. Tolerance and understanding will.