“Community Dialogue” on Thursday 7/16 will feature stories of profiling & protest, as well as suggestions for changes, with responses from Sheriff’s Department

A coalition of social-justice organizations from across Ventura County today announced plans for a virtual forum offering community members an opportunity to voice their perspectives, concerns and fears about policing in the wake of George Floyd’s murder and Black Lives Matter protests locally and nationwide.

“Policing and Racial Justice: A Community Dialogue for Ventura County” will be hosted on the advocacy group Indivisible: Conejo’s YouTube channel beginning at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 16. The event will feature Black residents and area students addressing topics including racial profiling, resource officers in schools, the effect of recent events on young people’s attitudes toward policing, the real meaning of “defund the police,” and suggestions for reforms in law enforcement and other public agencies.
Ventura County Sheriff William Ayub, or a command-level deputy within the Sheriff’s Department, is expected to participate and offer responses to the presentations by community members. Nick Odenath, President of the Ventura County Deputy Sheriffs’ Association, also is scheduled to participate.

Sponsors of the forum include the Ventura County chapter of the NAACP, the Ventura County chapter of Black Lives Matter, the LULAC chapters in Camarillo and the Conejo Valley, the student advocacy group Justice in the Classroom, 805 Resistance, Buen Vecino, Adelante, and the Lucstrong Foundation, as well as Indivisible: Conejo. The event is being organized with support from AD-44 Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin.