Police take seat at McDonald’s table in Romulus to have coffee, conversation with residents

By Jackie Harrison-Martin, The News-Herald
Original article HERE

Rom Coffee Cop 1.jpgWhen a community outreach program reaches out to residents for a meet and greet, and residents show up to participate, count it as a success.

That’s what members of the Romulus Police Department are calling its recent Coffee with a Cop initiative after numerous residents showed up to talk about city issues, say hello and show their appreciation for the service the police provide.

Coffee with a Cop was held at McDonald’s, 9777 Wayne Road.

When management at the restaurant heard about the Coffee with a Cop program and what law enforcement officers were trying to do with it, they offered their location as a meet and greet spot.

The idea was to get feedback from residents on any concerns they have and just to introduce themselves, but to their surprise, many came out just to say, “thank you,” and to “hang out.”

One resident even came to the restaurant with water bottles and key chains for the officers.

Officers wanted to plant the seed that they are open to talking with all residents and any issue, big or small, can be brought to the table.

“We just wanted to set up a forum for the community outreach,” Sgt. LaBrit Jackson said. “We don’t expect there to be a lot of serious issues brought up there.”

The sergeant said there are some activists in the city and some residents who simply “don’t like law enforcement” for one reason or another.

“Those folks pop up once or twice a year, but we welcome them folks, as well,” Jackson said.

Starting later this month, police intend to have meetings in different neighborhoods of the community.

About three or four meetings will be held and will focus on issues pertaining to that area.

Dates and times will be posted on the department’s Facebook page.

Jackson wants to reassure disappointed residents who commented on Facebook that they missed the event because it was held at a time when they had to work, that they will try to accommodate various working hours at future events.

One woman said it would have been nice to bring her small children and she doesn’t want to miss the next opportunity.