- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 16, 2017

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - Portland has started its search for a new police chief.

Recruitment for a “highly qualified and transformative” leader began Monday, The Oregonian/OregonLive reported (https://bit.ly/2pHxQzv ).

The job description states the candidate must have the capacity and commitment to improve relationships with members of minority communities, “ensuring that equity is a bedrock of policing.”

The listing also points out that the department has had a history of “legally sanctioned systematic racism with legally enforced exclusionary practices.”

The search comes as the bureau is struggling with a staffing shortage, controversy over its handling of large-scale protests, a recent officer-involved fatal shooting of a black teenager, and the adoption of policy, training and accountability reforms required under a settlement agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice.

“Portland deserves the chance to evaluate national talent in our efforts to create a 21st century police force focused on building community trust, embracing diversity, and living up to the highest standards of transparency and accountability,” said Mayor Ted Wheeler, who serves as Portland’s police commissioner.

Former Mayor Charlie Hales named Mike Marshman chief in late June. Marshman said he plans to apply to keep his job. The Portland Police Association has backed him.

“I don’t want to abandon ship when things are starting to move forward,” he said. “I feel obligated to continue to work to connect with people who work here and with the community.”

The deadline for submitting an application is June 12, with finalists identified the week of July 3.

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Information from: The Oregonian/OregonLive, https://www.oregonlive.com

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