ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Rochester City Council is officially accepting applications for people to sit on the Police Accountability Board. T
he nine-member board will have the power to investigate complaints, review police practices, and recommend changes.
The PAB alliance will nominate four applicants, the city council will nominate four, and Mayor Lovely Warren will nominate one. The alliance said they are looking to form a group that will represent the people in the communities that are impacted most by this issue.
What qualities should a member of the PAB have? City council president Loretta Scott said she wants people interested in community policing.
“I’m not looking for activists. I’m looking for citizens who are interested enough in this issue to be able to devote the time and attention to learning about the process and helping to create the process,” said Scott.
Interested applicants will answer why they think they’d be good for the board and what skills they bring to the table. Mayor Lovely Warren said she’s looking for every day Rochestarians.
“I think the ideal candidate is somebody that can be fair, that can balance what they’re hearing, that can also be trained in procedures of the police department but also be willing to hear and be compassionate,” said Warren.
Fairness is important to Pastor Wanda Wilson a member of the executive team of the PAB alliance. She said this board will have real authority and be the voice of the people of the City of Rochester.
“The approach is going to change when it comes to how policing is done in communities, especially black and brown communities, and that that transparency will be there and that the trust level between the police and the citizens of Rochester will be at a better place,” said Pastor Wilson.
We also spoke to police union president Mike Mazzeo who said this legislation was rushed and done the wrong way from the start. Loretta Scott said it is moving quickly but they’ll take whatever time they need to make sure everything gets done to make this process go smoothly.
Anyone interested in applying can read the board requirements and responsibilities here. Applications are due by November 27 and the appointments will be made on January 6.