Advocates renew call for Nassau police commissioner to resign over comment on force diversity

There's a renewed call Monday for Nassau Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder to step down or be fired in the wake of a controversial comment he made about a lack of diversity on the force.

News 12 Staff

Jun 14, 2021, 10:02 PM

Updated 1,032 days ago

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There's a renewed call Monday for Nassau Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder to step down or be fired in the wake of a controversial comment he made about a lack of diversity on the force.
As News 12 reported, Ryder apologized last month following comments he made to Newsday regarding the lack of diversity in Long Island's police departments. Ryder said, "My comments were not meant to paint anyone with a broad brush and if I offended anybody I apologize. That was not my intent."
According to Newsday, only 67 of 6,539 Black applicants were hired in the six years following the 2012 exam. Ryder was quoted in part saying, "These kids struggle because they don't have both parents around. They don't have a family history of law enforcement.  And they're at a disadvantage starting off.”
Fred Brewington, one of the founding members of Long Island Advocates for Police Accountability, sent a letter Monday to Nassau County Executive Laura Curran asking her to encourage the retirement and resignation, or bring about the firing of Ryder.
"This is a commissioner that lives in a world of stereotypes and if you've got stereotypes like that going on in your mind and you voice them, then they are truly what you believe and if you're going to believe those things, you're not appropriate to lead the police department, says Brewington.
According to the letter, "These comments are painful, grounded in dangerous racial stereotypes, and reflect a misunderstanding of the barriers to recruitment of quality candidates in Black and Brown communities."
In a statement to News 12 about the letter, Curran's Senior Communications Advisor Jordan Carmon says, "Both the county executive and the police commissioner will continue to focus on keeping Nassau residents safe while building trust between the police and the communities they serve by delivering historic reforms that improve transparency and diversity in the department."


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