Seattle Mayor Pomeroy appoints Mayor's Advisory Committee on Police Practices in 1955.

  • By HistoryLink.org Staff
  • Posted 1/09/2001
  • HistoryLink.org Essay 2938
In 1955, Seattle Mayor Allan Pomeroy (ca. 1907-1966) appoints the Mayor's Advisory Committee on Police Practices to investigate charges of police brutality. The committee issues a harsh indictment of police practices in the predominantly black Central Area neighborhood.

As Quintard Taylor writes in The Forging of a Black Community, the Committee's findings declared "that the Seattle Police Department -- like the white community -- held essentially racist attitudes about black citizens, frequently stereotyping them as 'criminal types.'"

As a result of the Committee's report, the mayor's office initiated a program to improve police-black community relations. Several police officers participated in intercultural workshops sponsored by the Seattle Public Schools and others were assigned to race relations classes at Seattle University.

Nevertheless, according to Taylor, police harassment of black citizens continued.


Sources: Quintard Taylor, The Forging of a Black Community: Seattle's Central District from 1870 Through the Civil Rights Era (Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1994), 178.

Related Topics:   Crime | Education | Society

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