MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – Miami-Dade police joined the Circle of Brotherhood on Friday to gain a greater understanding of each other’s reality and to strengthen relationships with the community.
As police training has taken a national spotlight following Tyre Nichols’ death in Memphis, participants, community members and facilitators tout that this particular training is needed all across the country.
The Circle of Brotherhood, now in its sixth year, has provided police with a “one-of-its-kind” training program that puts cadets, officers, community members and youth groups face-to-face with the interrelated core issues concerning policing in Black and brown neighborhoods.
Miami-Dade Police Director Freddie Ramirez has supported the training since its inception.
“I think it’s the most realistic training that our trainees can go through,” said Ramirez. “They get to see what our new officers go through, that we’re humble, we’re here to learn, to understand and to help.”
The Circle of Brotherhood is an organization of primarily Black men dedicated to community causes including crime prevention and conflict resolution.
“This training hits at the core of human relationships and trauma and racism,” said Circle of Brotherhood executive director Lyle Muhammad.
The organization hopes more communities follow suit.
“If this training was done in police departments all across this country, you would see a drastic change in how to interact with members of the community,” said Muhammad.
Jose Ortega, a trainee with the Miami-Dade Police Department, told Local 10 News that the course is giving others a chance to get a better grasp of the community.
“I want to be able to talk to them and be able to find out what really bothers them and what the issue is and solve that problem -- not just give a citation,” he said.
“If we start off with the youth, we can give them the understanding that law enforcement is not the enemy,” said police trainee Tina Malcolm. “If we all get together, we have the conversations that need to be had (and) that we all have the same goals.”
According to police, 38 cadets participated in Friday’s training program.