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Black Knights plan community outreach

Published: Mon, August 27, 2012 @ 12:06 a.m.



By John W. Goodwin Jr.



The Black Knights Police Association has been around for nearly four decades, but association officials say the public will see a more energized organization with more community involvement in the near future.

The association was established in 1975 by 12 black police officers with a list of goals that included preventing corruption and discrimination, improving relationships with the community and being instrumental in the recruitment of black police officers.

It was the BKPA that successfully sued the city to have more blacks promoted as administrators.

The organization earlier this year elected new officers and, with former police chief Jimmy Hughes at the helm and retired officer Delphine Baldwin-Casey as public relations director, they are looking to bolster the association’s community impact.

Baldwin-Casey said the BKPA will continue to be a gateway welcoming those in the minority community who may be reluctant to deal with police in general and want interaction with a minority officer, but the organization plans to go further.

Hughes and Baldwin-Casey said the organization is looking to work with young people and the community at large.

“We believe in the role-model approach and being active with the youth programs, working hand in hand with the youth,” Hughes said.

Baldwin-Casey said one of the methods the BKPA will use to increase the connection with youth and the community is a reinstatement of the youth and citizens’ police academies. Baldwin-Casey conducted similar citizen police academies before retiring from the Youngstown Police Department.

“People are still asking about those programs. Those were really successful programs,” Baldwin-Casey said. “Not only did we encourage kids to become police officers, but we opened up every area of law enforcement from police to FBI to judges to let those kids know how far they can go.”

The organization has always maintained a scholarship fund, but Hughes said he would like to see that fund used to ensure that young people interested in law enforcement can pay for the necessary training to make that dream a reality.

Hughes said the BKPA has always been an advocate for minority officers, but the organization, he said, would like to have a greater influence in getting officers additional training once they are on the job.

“We want to increase our activity level. We want to work with various officers to make them aware of training going on throughout the state and possibly offer some of that same training here,” he said.

Hughes said the organization will continue with those things it has done in the past such as providing food baskets and vouchers during the holidays. It will also look to eventually open the doors to its headquarters on Oakland Avenue near Superior Street in the city’s Brier Hill section of the North Side.

“We have always tried to figure out ways to open the door to the community. I see this being an education center, a youth facility and a place where people can just come in and take advantage of what we have to offer,” he said. “I believe it is important to stay close to the community.”


1zthafuture(6 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

...based on an article that states an organization started in '75 when there were only 12 black officers at a time when, based on the past prosperity of this city, there were likely more police officers then than there are now, you say there should be a white knights police association? there are already white knights; they're called the KKK. and it has nothing to do with what blacks need to quit thinking, so much as it has to do with what the established structure needs to stop assuming. just my opinion though...

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2tawni77(8 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

The area has been predominately white in the legal landscape for many years; someone who has never been discriminated against would never understand what it is like to be targeted, on the basis of the color of your skin or the religion you practice...I have yet to see anyone truly get a jury of their peers,their own race, etc. Nor have in all my years seen much change in thought of the long time practices of those in power; glad to see the organization still around!

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3NoBS(2827 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

As is typical of people like you, "Z," you miss the point. A group promoting one race over another is a racist group.


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4redeye1(5663 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

NoBS Didn't you know its only racism, if whites do it. Other groups are only fighting for equality LOL

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5redding(20 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

There's already a WHITE KNIGHTS ASSOC. It's called THE KKK AND SKINHEADS 101.

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6NoBS(2827 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

And the Black Knights are no different from the KKK. Racist is racist.

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7Silence_Dogood(1675 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

"It was the BKPA that successfully sued the city to have more blacks promoted as administrators."

And what was the method that was used to accomplish this, well the City was forced to create TWO Civil Service exam list's . One was for white men , and the other was for everyone else. You see , they could not just take an exam and stand with everyone else because those bad ,bad, white men were not being FAIR because they scored higher then everyone else. How dare they. In the old days you had to score in the top three, then they changed it to the top ten. But lets not forget just a few short years ago there were two list's that reflected the insanity of this method.You had people that were on the minority list of top ten that would not even be in the top one hundred list for the white male. But yet the City was forced to hire from that list. So what evolved from that 1975 lawsuit filled by the Black Knight's was nothing more then racist hiring on the part of the City . But it was acceptable racism because it was against white men. Just like zthafuture's attitude that it is acceptable for there to be a black police officer association , but if there is a white police officer association it must be racist.

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8Silence_Dogood(1675 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

And one other thing , Jimmy Hughes would NEVER have made it as far as he did in the Youngstown Police Force if it were not for the past practice of discrimination against white men because he NEVER was it the top ten of the combined list thru his promotion track. Food for thought.

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9taxpayer1001(274 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

"There's already a WHITE KNIGHTS ASSOC. It's called THE KKK AND SKINHEADS 101"

And the huge difference is that one is done illegally and carries no weight in the courtroom or for jobs....the other is unjustly legal and allows for big lawsuites and reverse discrimination!!

Explain the fairness there??

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10trueamerican32(2 comments)posted 3 years, 11 months ago

Why is it that when minorities ( blacks, women, non whites) " cry" or complain, they are pretty much handed a " silver spoon" or a step or two ahead of white males? It seems to me when it comes to employment and your names are placed on a list, WHOEVER has the highest score/experience on a hiring list should be chosen regardless of color or sex. Example....#1. Black, white male, female, other race...or whatever order it may be, that's the way it needs to be...but what gets me is you have say for instance you have 5 white males and a woman or black on the bottom of that list , they advance them up on the list. I guarantee if affirmative action ceased, every non white male and woman would cry racism and it would be brought back very soon but if a white man complained and stated it was racism, he would be told ," now we have to be fair to everyone"...what a ******* joke this country has become. Just a thought, Maybe because I have a little cherokee Indian in me, I should be given a free handout or better yet, ill just wait 5 or 10 years and handed jobs that should only be earned based on high scores, because by then...I will be a minority.

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