Redlands, a diverse city of 70,000 in California’s Inland Empire, has a city motto: “See Something, Say Something.”
“It’s so important to collaborate with the community. We need more eyes and ears, we solve crimes because someone comes forward,” said Lt. Travis Martinez, Redlands Police Department.
Martinez is in charge of community policing and liaison to the city’s Human Relations Commission. He heard about Not In Our Town: Light in the Darkness through Not In Our Town’s partner, the Department of Justice Community Oriented Policing Services and is utilizing our screening kit to plan his screening and strengthen relationships within the community.
Thanks to prompting from Martinez, the city’s Human Relations Commission will screen and discuss the film on Oct. 19 at the University of Redland’s Orton Center.
There’s been no shortage of supporters, either: three local Kiwanis clubs, Music Changing Lives, the Cops & Clergy Network, Common Vision Coalition, SixNineteen Committee, Islamic Center and the Redlands Unified School District. University of Redlands Race-Ethnic Studies Professor Keith Osajima will moderate the discussion following the film.
“People believe there needs to be a venue for discussion,” said Martinez. “It’s like a safe zone. People can air their differences and opinions in a positive environment and they know that people who have positions of authority are taking that into account.”
Earlier this year, Redlands witnessed a double homicide that left two black teens dead. Though the case is still unresolved, Martinez said it sparked tension in the community. Racial tensions occasionally flare up at the local high school and hate crimes do occur.
“This is the police department’s way of being proactive, of preventing and reducing hate crimes,” Martinez said.
For more information on the Redlands, Calif. screening, visit the event page here. For more information on the film, visit the Light in the Darkness page. You can also find a screening near you or host one in your town. Not In Our Town offers numerous resources to help make your screening successful.
Image: Police Lt. Travis Martinez, Library Director Larry Burgess and Fire Chief Jeff Frazier working in the community. Source: Redlands Daily Facts.