With a variety of local and national issues bringing questions of policing, racial equity and the intersection of those concepts to the fore, members of Ulster Activists think it’s time to create a standing town committee to address concerns around race relations in particular. Group member Jacki Brownstein told New Paltz town council members on January 21 that such a committee could be tasked with, among other things, heightening public understanding about the unjust burdens faced and unacknowledged contributions made by people of color in the community. Board members expressed enthusiasm for the concept and an eagerness to see a more detailed proposal.
Others at the meeting focused on the work of the town’s Police Reform and Reinvention Collaborative, the group formed to create a report pursuant to an executive order issued by the governor last year. Specifically, they were requesting that members of that group engage in more dialogue as they gather information, and to make their Thursday work sessions available for viewing online. Deputy supervisor Dan Torres assured the residents that this group is a model of how to comply with executive order 203, but shaking heads showed that not everyone agrees with that assessment.