BAKERSFIELD, CA (July 14, 2020) — Sheriff Donny Youngblood is working in collaboration with the MLK CommUNITY Initiative to assemble a Community-Wide Advisory Council. “We are going to do this; however, I want to make sure it represents the community we serve. We work for the people. We want to build a trusted relationship with those who depend on us to protect them,” says Sheriff Youngblood.

Arleana Waller states, “This collaboration shows a commitment to our communities as a whole. We want to educate and enlighten and be educated and enlightened.” She continued, “We believe the only way to accomplish this goal is to bring a diverse voice to the table, to roll up our sleeves and to work from a space of love and understanding – together we can.”

This follow-up meeting took place on Wednesday, July 8, 2020, one month from the exchange between the Sheriff’s Office and a panel of community members via a Zoom meeting held on June 10, 2020. The Zoom meeting resulted in over 6,000 live views last month. The follow-up meeting was held at the Sheriff’s Office.

In attendance at the July 8th meeting was Arleana Waller, Sheriff Donny Youngblood, Undersheriff Doug Jauch, and Isaiah Crompton. Effective immediately, the four agreed to begin to build out the Sheriff’s Office Community-Wide Advisory Council. “This is a major historic moment and a positive move in the right direction,” says Isaiah Crompton.

Demographically speaking, the Council will be designed to be both diverse and culturally inclusive and will represent not just the greater Bakersfield area communities, but all Kern County communities.

Still in the planning stages, the initial Advisory Council with the Sheriff’s Office will consist of about 20 local leaders/organizations. The Council plans to add other community partner organizations over time. After guidelines and protocol are established for the Sheriff’s Office Community-Wide Advisory Council, other interested partners, community leaders, organizations and concerned community members will be added.

For more information, or if you are interested in participating, please contact: Arleana Waller – email: mlkcommunityinitiative@gmail.com or text: 661-379-0670 OR email: communitymeeting@kernsheriff.org