Affirmation of

March 22, 2018

WHEREAS, the Illinois NAACP State Conference is part of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, established in 1909 following race riots in Springfield, Illinois; and the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police was established in 1941, and

WHEREAS, the NAACP “advocates for smarter, results-based criminal justice policies to keep our communities safe, including … an end to racial disparities at all levels of the system,” and

WHEREAS, the NAACP’s principal objective “is to ensure the political, educational, social and economic equality of rights of all persons and to eliminate racial hatred and racial discrimination,” and

WHEREAS, the Illinois Chiefs declare in their Vision Statement that the association values “Compassion, Integrity, Accountability, Fairness, Professionalism, Innovation, Continuous Improvement, Diversity, [and] Inclusion,” and

WHEREAS, both organizations acknowledge that there are historical reasons for some mistrust between police and communities of color, and

WHEREAS, both organizations have a mutual passion for defending and protecting the civil rights of all citizens and in keeping our communities and citizens safe, and

WHEREAS, the associations conducted four joint leadership-level gatherings called “World Cafes” in 2016 and 2017 in Bloomington, Lake County, the Quad-Cities, and Champaign, where a total of ninety-seven leaders from law enforcement and communities of color discussed common concerns and “what most needs our attention going forward,” and

WHEREAS, the associations conducted four joint leadership-level gatherings called “Let’s Talk” -- in 2016 in Tinley Park and Bloomingdale, and 2017 in Tinley Park and Mt. Vernon, where a total of one hundred and seventy-seven leaders from law enforcement and communities of color discussed common concerns and “where do we go from here,”

NOW BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED that we affirm the following principles regarding the relationship between law enforcement and the communities and people they serve in Illinois:

  1. We value the life of every person and consider life to be the highest value.
  2. All persons should be treated with dignity and respect. This is another foundational value.
  3. We reject discrimination toward any person that is based on race, ethnicity, religion, color, nationality, immigrant status, sexual orientation, gender, disability, or familial status.
  4. We endorse the six pillars in the report of the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing. The first pillar is to build and rebuild trust through procedural justice, transparency, accountability, and honest recognition of past and present obstacles.
  5. We endorse the four pillars of procedural justice, which are fairness, voice (i.e., an opportunity for citizens and police to believe they are heard), transparency, and impartiality.
  6. We endorse the values inherent in community policing, which includes community partnerships involving law enforcement, engagement of police officers with residents outside of interaction specific to enforcement of laws, and problem-solving that is collaborative, not one-sided.
  7. We believe that developing strong ongoing relationships between law enforcement and communities of color at the leadership level and street level will be the keys to diminishing and eliminating racial tension.
  8. We believe that law enforcement and community leaders have a mutual responsibility to encourage all citizens to gain a better understanding and knowledge of the law to assist them in their interactions with law enforcement officers.
  9. We support diversity in police departments and in the law enforcement profession. Law enforcement and communities have a mutual responsibility and should work together to make a concerted effort to recruit diverse police departments.
  10. We believe de-escalation training should be required to ensure the safety of community members and officers. We endorse using de-escalation tactics to reduce the potential for confrontations that endanger law enforcement officers and community members; and the principle that human life should be taken only as a last resort; and

THEREFORE, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that we vow by mutual affirmation to work together and stand together in our communities and at the state level to implement these values and principles, and to replace mistrust with mutual trust wherever, whenever, and however we can, and 

THEREFORE, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that we work collaboratively to publicize widely the adoption of this resolution throughout the state of Illinois.


Teresa Haley, President                         James R. Kruger, Jr., President      
NAACP Illinois State Conference            Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police


Substantial agreement by:
Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police Board of Officers
January 31, 2018

Illinois NAACP State Conference of Branches
February 10, 2018


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