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Orange County hosts town hall focused on George Floyd, police and community relations

Virtual event happening at OCFL.net on Friday

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings will host a virtual forum Friday to discuss the recent events regarding the death of George Floyd and how the county can improve law enforcement and community relations.

“This session will serve as a forum for local leaders to engage the community regarding the recent occurrences, both national and local, and surrounding the death of George Floyd and police-related issues,” Demings said.

The virtual town hall is titled ‘Candid conversations with our community.'

Orlando Police Chief Orlando Rolon is one of the several community leaders on the town hall panel. He said he will be all ears and ready to work on solutions to improve community trust.

Lisa Bachman and Monica May who both co-chair Orange County’s MLK Initiative will be moderating the town hall. They encourage participation from community members.

“Write your questions down... What are you talking to your children about? What do you want to hear from police officers,” said May.

“I think a lot of people are demanding accountability right now, they need answers, they want change and this is a nice opportunity to hear from our community leaders," said Bachman.

The panel and guest speakers for the town hall include:

  • Val Demings — U.S. Representative, Florida's 10th Congressional District
  • Kamia Brown, State Representative, Florida House of Representative District 45
  • John Mina — Sheriff, Orange County Sheriff's Office
  • Aramis Ayala — State Attorney, Ninth Judicial Circuit
  • Orlando Rolón — Police Chief, Orlando Police Department
  • Beverlye Colson Neal — Chapter President, Orange County NAACP
  • Dawn Curtis — President, Orange County Democratic Black Caucus
  • Miles Mulrain Jr. — Founder, Let Your Voice Be Heard, Incorporated
  • Yanidsi Velez — Florida State Director, Hispanic Federation
  • Roderick Zak — Pastor, Rejoice in the Lord Ministries

The virtual town hall on OCFL.net/MLK will happen Friday from 3 to 4:30 p.m. and will include representatives who can discuss government as well as state issues, religious leaders and community advocates. The town hall can be viewed on YouTube, Vimeo and WebEx. You can register for the town hall by clicking HERE.

[RELATED COVERAGE: Orange County leaders explain how they can mend law enforcement-community relationships | Black-owned restaurants you can support in Orlando]

“This is the first step to bring local leaders, clergy and law enforcement together to develop long- and short-term strategies to address the issues facing our society," Demings said.

The town hall is part of the mayor’s ongoing Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. initiative, which has hosted similar forums over the past seven months.

The initiative “is a group of citizens here within our community who have committed themselves to embracing the philosophies of non-violence to accomplish justice, (and) civil rights,” Demings said on Monday. “Our goal is to create a vehicle by which individuals can constructively have a conversation about where we go in the short term and perhaps set a framework for where we can go long term to improve police-community relations.”


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