PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - The Portland Police Association has launched a billboard campaign to raise awareness on public safety concerns as the city continues to grapple with gun violence and other crime related issues this year.
The billboards, which will be posted across the city, contain statements such as "Crime victims deserve better," "Put politics aside. Put public safety first," and "Do you feel safe in Portland?" The police union said in a statement that it hopes the billboards will encourage city leaders to prioritize public safety over politics by fully funding and staffing the Portland Police Bureau.
Included at the bottom of the billboards is a website that directs to a petition, encouraging Portlanders to support efforts for funding law enforcement.
"Devaluing community safety as a critical part of our city’s infrastructure is having devastating effects and crime victims are paying the price," the police union stated.
The campaign comes as gun violence remains an issue in Portland. So far this year, there have more than 567 shootings, according to a figure provided by the PPA. The union said that's more than twice the number recorded during the same period in 2020.
The police union continues to advocate for a fully funded and staffed police bureau, while recruitment and retention efforts have waned over the last decade. "Hiring hasn’t matched attrition, leaving our city’s first responders catastrophically understaffed," the police union stated.
The police union hopes to have enough officers to meet certain public safety priorities including:
- Proactively policing to prevent crime
- Responding to calls for service
- Prioritizing the needs of crime victims
- Investigating and solving crimes
- Addressing the deadly surge in gun and gang violence
- Serving those who are impacted by livability issues surrounding homelessness
- Assisting those suffering in mental health crises
- Engaging in proactive community policing in our neighborhoods
- Ensuring the safety of Portlanders and our officers
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - The executive director of the Portland Police Association addressed the amount of shootings in the city, saying it's on …
"Inadequate staffing in the police bureau is hurting our communities and putting all of us at risk," said Daryl Turner, Executive Director of the PPA. "Nothing is more basic to the livability of a city than public safety. We desperately need City leaders to take action, fund and staff our police bureau, and put politics aside and public safety first." Turner has been an outspoken critic of the City of Portland's defunding of the Portland Police Bureau.
The police union told FOX 12 that a total of seven billboards will be up throughout the metro area and will stay up through October. The billboards were paid by the police union, but it's not known at this time how much they cost.