Cops & Cups: community panel discussion to be held Saturday
By Shavonne Walker
SALISBURY — The local chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc. is hosting a community panel discussion Saturday with members of the police department and other community leaders.
The discussion, Cops & Cups, will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Oct. 22 at the Lakewood Apartment Club House, 50 Lakewood Drive. Part of the panel will be members of the Salisbury Police Department, community leaders to include the Rev. Patrick Jones, pastor of New Zion Missionary Baptist Church, and Salisbury NAACP President Scott Teamer.
The event will be an opportunity for not just Lakewood residents, but anyone who would like talk about safety, interaction with police officers and what the community can do to have an open/healthy relationship with law enforcement.
Crystal Kelly, co-chair of the sorority’s social action committee, said the panel discussion/forum is targeted at youth and their parents, but anyone can attend.
Those in attendance will be able to partake in a cup of coffee or tea and doughnuts.
The sorority wanted to have a panel discussion after answering the call of its national headquarters’ initiative.
“We want to build positive relationships with the police department. We want to teach local young people what to do and what not to do to have a successful encounter with police,” Kelly said.
She said organizers will have fact sheets available for youth, parents and other attendees.
“I would like for our young people to take away a sense that ‘I can go to the police regardless of what I’ve seen and heard on TV,’ ” she said.
In addition to discussing encounters with police and building positive relationships with law enforcement, Kelly said, there will also be information available about voting.
Contact reporter Shavonne Walker at 704-797-4253.
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