Campaign Promises: Lopinto on diversity training and people of ethnic backgrounds

Campaign Promises: Lopinto on diversity training and people of ethnic backgrounds
Source: Fox 8

JEFFERSON PARISH, LA (WVUE) - Nationally, the topic of police officers and diversity training has become more pronounced than ever before.

The Sheriff's Office already provides diversity training for its staffers.

According to a report by NOLA.com, during a town hall in February Lopinto answered questions on the department's readiness to address diversity in the parish  from NAACP West Jefferson President Gaylor Spiller.

According to Lopinto, African-Americans account for about 30 percent of the total department, including patrol deputies, the corrections center and support staff.

Lopinto also pointed out that the numbers are comparable to Jefferson Parish's African-American population, which is at about 27.5 percent, according to census data.

Though he did not break out the percentages for patrol deputies, Lopinto told the crowd the last five academy classes were 23 to 24 percent African-American.

"Do things need to go forward? Of course they do. I need people of every race working on the street," Lopinto said.

Lopinto stressed that the race of the deputy shouldn't make a difference.

"We need to make sure we treat everybody fairly," Lopinto said, stressing the need to be professional.

Lopinto beat his opponent and former JPSO spokesperson John Fortunato during a special election March 24.

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