Hate and Containment

Organized racism and middle-of-the-road discrimination are everywhere. How can law enforcement agencies help communities help themselves before it's too late?


   After a handful of incidents last year, the University of California Irvine developed an online reporting system, called Campus Climate for any issues having to do with bias hate. "We see this as a serious issue on college campuses," says University Chief Paul Henisey. "We want the campus community to be free to engage in their academic pursuits without fear of hate or bias; it is something that is always a challenge, simply because of the wide diversities the universities attract."

   San Diego has devoted huge amounts of resources in community relations and outreach over the years, and Hudgins says each dollar "has paid dividends."

   Years ago when a race-driven mob was burning and tearing down cities around the country and the state in the midst of the Rodney King riots, Hudgins maintains not a window was broken in San Diego, and he attributes this to an effective outreach community. To this day his agency upholds a close working relationship with minority and religious groups, as well as special interest organizations. "They understand there's no gain to be had through violence, or through harboring those that would commit violence," he says.

   Hudgins recommends agencies looking to create or strengthen bonds within their own community run with their strengths to get a program on the ground. "Find people that are active and engaged ... people that show interest ... and don't let perfection get in the way of doing good.

   Start small and get the ball rolling," he says. "Trust is not something you're going to build up instantly."

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