New Portland Public Order Team Replaces Disbanded Rapid Response Team

In anticipation of potential protests during the upcoming presidential election, the Portland City Council has unanimously approved the creation of a new team within the Portland Police Bureau (PPB) called the ‘Public Order Team’. This new team replaces the disbanded ‘Rapid Response Team’ and aims to ensure public safety and manage crowd control situations effectively.

The decision to form the ‘Public Order Team’ comes after members of the previous ‘Rapid Response Team’ voted to resign in 2021. This action followed the indictment of one of the officers, who was accused of using excessive force during a protest in the summer of 2020. Eventually, the charge against the officer was dismissed, but the incident highlighted the need for reevaluating the approach to crowd control and public order management.

The newly approved ‘Public Order Team’ will be responsible for handling potential protests and maintaining order during critical events. The team will undergo specialized training to handle crowd control situations with a strong emphasis on de-escalation techniques and respecting individuals’ rights to peaceful assembly and free speech. The formation of this new unit will require an additional budget allocation of $380,000 per year. This funding will be utilized to provide the necessary resources, equipment, and training for the team members to effectively fulfill their duties.

The Portland City Council’s unanimous approval of the ‘Public Order Team’ reflects their commitment to ensuring public safety and upholding the principles of peaceful protest within the community. The council recognizes the importance of having a dedicated team that is well-prepared and trained to handle potential protests during the upcoming presidential election and other critical events.

By establishing the ‘Public Order Team’, the Portland City Council aims to strike a balance between maintaining public safety and respecting the rights of individuals to express their opinions and engage in peaceful demonstrations. The team’s focus on de-escalation techniques and adherence to constitutional rights will be crucial in fostering a safe and inclusive environment for all community members.

As plans are underway to prepare for potential protests, the Portland Police Bureau will work closely with community leaders, organizations, and stakeholders to ensure open lines of communication and promote transparency. The goal is to build trust and collaboration between law enforcement and the community, fostering an environment that values public safety and the protection of individual rights.

The creation of the ‘Public Order Team’ represents a step forward in the ongoing efforts to improve crowd control strategies and ensure the safety of both protesters and the general public. The Portland City Council’s proactive planning is in response and in anticipation of potential protests during the upcoming presidential election.