Columbus mayor plans to help make improvements within the city’s police department

Columbus Police Department employees received invitations to complete a survey from the mayor

COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI)- Columbus Police Department employees received invitations to complete a survey from the mayor.

Mayor Keith Gaskin said his plan for the information is to help make the police department stronger to serve the community. He felt the best way to start that process was to get feedback from officers, then take that input to the chief.

Gaskin said the idea came from a meeting with members of the department.

“About a week prior to me doing this I had an entire shift of the Columbus police department ask to come visit with me to talk to me about some issues and some concerns they had and some questions,” said Gaskin.

Gaskin plans to send surveys out to each department as departments heads prepare for their annual reviews. Nearly 70 surveys were sent to C.P.D employees; so far, only about half of those been returned. The mayor plans to extend the survey until he gets a better response.

“I will use that information that we have to have discussions about areas to highlight what we’re doing well and how to continue to do that and talk about areas where we think we could do better,” said Gaskin.

Surveys were sent anonymously; however some folks put their names on them.

“This is not about me personally this is not about the police chief personally or any officer or any staff member down there personally this is about the citizens of Columbus and how can we best serve them,” said Gaskin.

Chief Shelton declined to speak on camera about the surveys. Shelton and Gaskin will meet in the coming weeks in an effort to discuss the workings of the police department.

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