Webinar: Police Oversight Update

Learn about plans for a new Community Board to investigate police misconduct – October 11

On Wednesday, October 11, from 7 to 8:30 pm, the League of Women Voters of Portland will present a Zoom webinar on “A new Community Board for Police Accountability.” The speakers include members of the Police Accountability Commission (PAC), who spent thousands of volunteer hours planning the details of how this new community board will operate. The final plan carries out the requirements in the charter amendment that voters passed in November 2020 by almost 82%.  A representative of the U.S. Department of Justice will also speak.


    • Yume Delegato (PAC member) will cover how the Community Board for Police Accountability members will be selected and their powers and duties as they relate to police misconduct cases and policy recommendations.
    • Dan Handelman (PAC member) will explain how the new Civilian Office of Police Accountability will handle police misconduct cases.
    • Faythe Aiken (PAC member) will describe the Transition Plan for moving from the current police oversight system to the new system over the next approximately two years.
    • And:
    • Assistant U.S. Attorney Jared Hager, U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, will explain what the Settlement Agreement between the city and the U.S. DOJ requires of the city as it enacts its new police accountability system.

Members of the public are invited to join us for this Zoom Webinar by registering on or before October 10 at 8 pm. Those watching the live program on October 11 will be able to enter questions in the chat. The short registration form is here.

Watch Our Video on Portland Police Oversight

This excellent video adds valuable information to our study of Portland Police Oversight. Listen as three expert panelists explain the problems we face and the work being done on these difficult issues. The speakers also use slides and stories to make their points.

      • Attorney Carol Johnson reviews some of the main points in the study.
      • Training Advisory Council Chair Shawn Campbell talks about the progress made so far. He also addresses the remaining issues of inequity, use of deadly force and lack of transparency.
      • Then, Representative Janelle Bynum highlights the work of the Oregon Legislature in 2020 and 2021 to address police accountability.

Finally, all three speakers answer questions from the audience to round out the discussion. Click the arrow below to view the video.

This program is also being rebroadcast on public access TV channels. See the schedule below for dates and times.

Improving Police Oversight

Speaking out again for better community oversight of police

The Portland League has sent testimony to the City Council, supporting Commissioner Hardesty’s proposed charter amendment on police oversight. The City Council will discuss this proposal on Wednesday, July 29, at 3:30.

Below is an excerpt from our testimony. You can read the whole statement here.

Although we recognize that it will take more than a charter change, this proposal has the potential to bring us much closer to the type of system envisioned by the majority of Mayor Katz’s workgroup in 2000. That workgroup called for an independent civilian agency guided by a community board with the power to investigate complaints of police misconduct, compel officer testimony, and make policy recommendations to the police bureau and city council.

In addition, the League’s testimony recommends building on the successful parts of our current oversight system. We also believe that improving the current system requires input from the community.

A LOT is happening!

So many important things are happening at once! Here are links to the posts and pages about them:

Fixing Police Oversight

On July 1, 2020, The Oregonian published an “IN OUR OPINION” piece by LWV of Portland Action Chair, Debbie Aiona, and founding member of Portland Copwatch, Dan Handelman. The Portland League and Portland Copwatch have been working to improve police oversight for decades. In their Opinion article, they recommended changes to make the system more effective. These would give more power to Portland’s Independent Police Review (IPR) office and its Citizens Review Committee (CRC).

  • Ensure that in addition to being able to subpoena civilians and documents, IPR has the power to compel officers to testify or face discipline if they refuse. The office also should be given the authority to access all relevant police files.
  • Empower IPR to investigate incidents in which police officers use deadly force, and give survivors or their family members the right to appeal their cases to the IPR’s Citizen Review Committee.
  • Empower the CRC to review cases based on whether the majority of the evidence supports a given finding, rather than having to defer to police bureau decisions.

You can read the entire article here.

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