Stories from Communities
Nov 6: How the Detroit PD TRUSTed Peace
In an unusual coming together in peace during a time of huge potential unrest, the Detroit police came out on Friday Nov 6th not in riot gear, but in baseball caps. Meeting them at the site of protests were TRUST Network partners from the Wayne County Dispute Resolution Center who were equally dressed for peace. According to TRUST Network partners on the scene, the police were cautious as they approached protestors. Instead of herding them, the officers let peaceful people go on their way. Why was this event different?
Because TRUST Network partners had previously built bridges with the Detroit police using their own channels as well as TRUST Network resources. When TRUST Network partners from the Wayne County Dispute Resolution Center (a member of NAFCM) got to the location, they spoke with an officer on the line separating the two protesting groups and let them know the TRUST Network was on the scene. Confirming the message that they had been conveying to the police department for days beforehand, they reaffirmed that they were available and on the scene to help keep the peace. And that is exactly what happened.
A broad network/platform designed to prevent violent conflict before, during and after the U.S. 2020 elections.
For all inquiries, please email us here: firstname.lastname@example.org
What is EWER?
EWER stands for Early Warning and Early Response. An EWER system picks up signals that violence may be brewing in a specific time and place, and communicates those signals to persons who may be able to mitigate or prevent the violence.
EWER at a local level has proven to be effective in preventing violence in multiple countries going through complex social upheaval.
Every country -- in fact every region and even every community -- has its own social norms and structures. It follows that any EWER system must be customized to the setting in which it is used.
What is the TRUST Network doing?
We are creating and customizing an Early Warning and Early Response system for the United States. Our goal is to prevent and mitigate violence stimulated by electoral politics and underlying social issues.
In addition to looking to help our country be peaceful and safe for everyone in these particularly tense times, we are also establishing this EWER system with the long-term future in mind. We do not believe the divisions in our country will evaporate soon after the upcoming election.
How will we work?
Individuals trained to deliver trustworthy information will send information about rising tension and violence to a central hub. Data gatherers and conflict analysts will also support the central hub with the information needed to identify hotspots.
From the hub, the information will be used to alert responders. One key component is to have skilled responders who are local and trusted, who have relationships in the community such that they can help to soothe tensions before those tensions escalate to violence. Another is that, if violence is already occurring, proper and positive community relations can make an important difference in how the situation evolves. A third is that in a parallel but linked action stream, leaders from across social sectors and party lines will be asked to spread messages of calm and nonviolence.
The tasks of the message-spreader, monitor, and responder may be fulfilled by the same or different people, and their impacts intersect. We will start with our local support connected when possible through a community mediation center.
The information, response, and outcome will be monitored in a continuous feedback loop to improve both the system and its results.
Where will you find the people?
Our partners’ existing networks, taken together, comprise hundreds of organizations and thousands of individuals all across the country. And we are reaching out to expand on those networks.
What can I do to help?
What connections do you have to the people we need, and might you be one yourself?
- calm, thoughtful, informed observer of your community
- peacebuilder: de-escalator, mediator, negotiator, facilitator; and/or trainer of those skills
- media person
- community leader: clergy, business leader, teacher, head of local organization