SALT LAKE CITY — The Salt Lake Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the Utah Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) have announced a cooperative agreement to work together to bridge the community divide.
The agreement was announced in a letter signed by Jeanetta Williams, President of the Salt Lake and Tri-state branch of the NAACP and Brent Jex, President of the Utah Fraternal Order of Police.
The letter follows a June 2 meeting between both groups.
It describes the meeting as "an effort to reconcile the current narrative that exists and to set a strategy in place to foster dialogue and understanding between the police and the communities that they serve."
The letter says the NAACP and the Utah FOP have "a relationship that goes back several years, and the trust that we've built is now being used to foster even more relationship building and shared progress."
"To be clear," the letter states, "both the NAACP and the FOP denounce the actions of both the officer in Minnesota as well as those that have taken to extreme violence in the streets following that incident.
"Solutions are created in discussions of collaboration and understanding, followed by improvements. Rioting only pushes the important issues from the surface, allowing all sides to feel abandoned by the other," the two leaders said in the letter.
It ended by saying, "Our organizations look forward to this ongoing working relationship."