Should the Newtown PD Hire Qualified Officers of Color?
At the January 13, 2021, Newtown Board of Supervisors (BOS) meeting, resident Frank McCarron made a case for increased diversity among Newtown Township's police officers. Currently, all 29 or so officers of the Newtown Township Police Department (NTPD) are white. Mr. McCarron suggested that all 3 officers that are planned to be hired in 2021 be officers of color.
The following is an audio clip from that meting, which includes Mr. McCarron's comments and Chief John Hearn's response when asked by Supervisor David Oxley to respond.
Mr. McCarron suggested that the racial profile of the NTPD should match that of the township population, which is mostly white.
However, another argument could be made that the NTPD racial profile match that of the targets of the majority of NTPD's actions: Traffic violations. The NTPD make many traffic stops on major roads - Newtown Bypass, Swamp Rd, and Stoopville Rd - that have a lot of non-resident traffic. We don't know the racial profile of that group because that information is not collected by NTPD. For comparison, the Pa. State Police are resuming the collection of racial, ethnic data during traffic stops. Read more about that here.
This survey asks your opinion of increasing diversity in the NTPD. No identifying information is collected via this survey unless you opt-in to provide such information for purposes of follow-up by subscribing to John Mack's email newsletter. After completing the survey, you will be able to see a de-identified summary of the results to date.
DISCLAIMER: This is not an official Newtown Township approved survey. Its purpose is solely to inform John Mack – a Newtown Supervisor – of the public’s opinion regarding this issue.
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