LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Studies show more than half of people in low income communities believe officers treat people differently based on their race.
But to help change that stigma, the Lansing Police Department and hundreds of community members got together today for the annual “Back the Blue 5K.”
“This group has actually been very, very supportive of us,” said Lansing Police Sergeant Sean Mills.
As tensions between police officers and minority communities remain high across the country, officers here in Lansing are working to put their best foot forward to try and bridge the gap.
“We’ve had some incidents nationwide that have obviously been some concerns,” said Mills.
Mills says officers now more than ever need support from the public.
“It builds us back up to go out and do our job realizing that we have the support of the community,” said Mills.
“I have a lot of local law enforcement that are friends of mine and I’m just out here to support the event,” said Reggie Davis, a runner in today’s race.
Davis says it’s important for the community to come together as one and support our local officers.
“To see all different colors and creeds, different races of people, different ages, kids, a lot of canines out running today, it’s a group effort amongst the city and it’s a wonderful thing to see” said Davis.
Amy Waldrop, the president of Back the Badge Michigan says it’s important to give back to those who put their lives on the line for us every day.
“They are here every day for us and it’s okay for us to take some time to be there for them,” said Waldrop.
Even though tensions between police and the public have grown in states across the country, Sergeant Mills says he’s happy to start making a difference right here at home.
“We can get to know each other on a personal level so that when we’re out there in the streets and we have our job to do, people realize that we’re just normal humans just like everybody else,” said Mills.