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Law enforcement across the country will interact with their communities this weekend

Knoxville, Tenessee Police
Knoxville, Tenessee Police

National Faith & Blue Weekend is a part of One Congregation One Precinct initiative.

This weekend communities across America are coming together to get up close and personal with law enforcement.

Reverend Markel Hutchins, the national lead organizer of National Blue Weekend, said he came up with the vision to create Faith & Bluein April of last year. This is a movement where faith-based organizations collaborate with police officers to create unity in communities.

“For the purpose of reducing bias in all directions, increasing trust and increasing collaboration, because that's the only way to stop officer-involved tragedies, while also bringing down crime and violence,” Hutchins explained.

He said the greater need, to fix issues with police relations, is to focus on the hearts and minds of individuals and not so much policy and procedure.

“We can talk about policy reform,” he added, “which is important. There need to be some standards with regard to universal force and other kinds of standards when it comes to policing.”

Hutchins said he has led marches and protests for several years.
“I just began to be concerned that our protests and our demonstrations were not effective,” he said. “We were passionate, and we were understandably angry and visceral. But it wasn't curing anything.”
The first Faith & Blue experience took place in October 2020. A complete list of cities taking part in this event can be found on the organization’s website.

Yvonne covers artistic, cultural, and spiritual expressions in the COVID-19 era. This could include how members of community cultural groups are finding creative and innovative ways to enrich their personal lives through these expressions individually and within the context of their larger communities. Boose is a recent graduate of the Illinois Media School and returns to journalism after a career in the corporate world.