The Dallas city manager’s office has just released a survey for Dallas residents about the selection process for a new chief of police. The survey asks respondents to choose from multiple-choice selections of qualities and issues they feel are most important.
Right off the bat, we have some unnecessary questions regarding the respondent’s gender and ethnicity. Then we jump straight into response choices driven more by social media buzzwords than actual policing.
For example, the survey lists “Promotes diversity and gender equity in the workplace” as a qualification citizens may choose as one of the most important when selecting a new chief of police.
Any leader worth their salt already promotes these values and utilizes a strictly merit-based system. If the city is considering hiring anyone that has a problem with a diverse and equitable workplace, then perhaps the selection process is already flawed.
Let us translate a few more of the questions from City Manager T.C. Broadnax-speak into English: “Politically astute but not political.”
Aka, someone that will cow to city leadership and not take a stand on political matters that affect the safety of Dallas citizens.
“Track record of reducing crime and promoting community safety.”
Duh. Seriously? Does the city manager’s office really need to be told that people want this quality in any candidate? The citizens of Dallas should be insulted that this is even being asked.
In fact, the more Keep Dallas Safe examines the survey, the more we are convinced that it was made by Broadnax’s office specifically to pay lip service to the idea of a transparent selection process and has little, if any, real value to the citizens of Dallas.
The rest of the survey is much of the same. It either states obvious requirements or goes off into buzzword territory. The people deserve better.
Dallas citizens deserve an honest and open selection process that allows for genuine and meaningful input on the candidates for chief of police.
We invite you to join KDS in demanding Broadnax provide more than lip service and give the people—not just a select few—a real voice in this.
City Manager T.C. Broadnax: 214-670-3302; TC.Broadnax@dallascityhall.com
This is a commentary republished with the author’s permission. If you wish to submit a commentary to Texas Scorecard, please submit your article to firstname.lastname@example.org.