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City of Tulsa received more than 70 recommendations to improve police relations

Posted at 4:48 PM, Mar 10, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-10 22:38:51-05

TULSA, Okla. -- Tulsa now has a better idea on how to improve community and police relations.

Now leaders are hoping residents will be the driving force in keeping the city accountable.

It took the City's Community Policing Commission roughly about three months to talk to folks in town and create more than 70 recommendations to create a better relationship between residents and officers.

Now they'll be put to the test with everyday Tulsans in the driver's seat.

“Everybody probably afraid of them in a certain sense,” said Tulsa resident Willie Berry.

Berry has only lived neara 61st and Peoria for a few years.

He's seen the fear...but says he's also seen an effort from officers in the community.

“The community officer thing is great. I've met the officer, the kids respond to him,” he said.

It's just the beginning, according to city leaders who unveiled dozens of new policing strategies tailored to Tulsa.

Paid for with vision funds, leaders say each mission is specific to building trust, reducing crime and educating the public.

“Phase One was putting this report together. Phase two will be having each item, each recommendation  visible online on a dashboard that any citizen can access,” said Mayor G.T. Bynum.

From there, residents can see exactly how officers are doing...and voice their concerns in scheduled forums.

They plan to have policies clear, concise, and online...and put more officers in the community.

They're moves to change minds in an effort to move forward and learn from the past.

“To me, it feels good to know somebody has a concern about us and our needs,” said resident Paul Davis.

“The better surroundings you're around, it'd be better. Make you think better...you know, I don't have to slum anymore, you know, you start feeling better about yourself,” said Berry.

All recommendations for the City can be found here at www.cityoftulsa.org/police.

Mayor Bynum says residents can start tracking its progress in a couple of months.