Monday 22nd January 2018,

Asian Americans

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KIRO: Diversity in Seattle Police Department Questioned after Murder of Donnie Chin

posted by Randall

Seattle Police DepartmentOne year after the murder of Donnie Chin, a man who passionately patrolled the streets of Seattle’s International District nightly, his murder remains unsolved.

KIRO reports many activists are wondering aloud if things would be different if the Seattle Police Department were more diverse.

Asian Americans are by far the most underrepresented community in the department.

They are 14 percent of the population, but just 6.9% of the force.

“Are we invisible or what? You would think being the largest minority in the city we wouldn’t be,” community activist Al Sugiyama said.

Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole took over in 2014 and says diversity is a priority, but she failed to appoint a single Asian American to her command staff.

“We attracted a great diverse candidate pool but we only had one representative of the Asian community who applied and that person didn’t meet the minimum criteria for the job,” O’Toole said.

The words of Donnie Chin himself still ring true today, say many in the Asian American community.

“It’s not a priority,” Chin said about diversity in the SPD. “I’m convinced if they want to do, if Chief O’Toole wanted to do it, she would have did it. It’s really as simple as that.”

Reporter Siemny Kim spent several months looking into diversity in the department and her report is below.

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