Perspective is not about listening to everyone ones. It is about your personal point of view. Whether it be events that happened, or how they made you feel.
Perspective Training is about from a mental standpoint being able to assess varying viewpoints and making an objective rational decision that is in accordance with the law. Not telling your point of view communicated by threats that are not legally correct. Much like being threatened with being sued by a Assistant Chatham County Attorney, when writing the truth is not against the law. Those are facts supported by evidence. Her not liking the facts doesn't make me guilty of slander or libel. It is the same as her filling an illegal Writ citing evidence she never provided to the court- merely saying a police report was made and an email sent does not make it fact. Without supporting documentation it makes it a violation of my 2nd Amendment rights that Judge Bass assisted in.
You need to listen to all parties in a fair and neutral way, but you can not expect to force your opinion down anyone's throat. It is not about forcing people to walk in your shoes, agree with you or tell you how you should feel. If you don't like the result of your behavior, you shouldn't have done it. End of story. Actions have consequences..even jail time despite being a lawyer.
Perspective Training was created to teach first responders to not judge people based on what they think they see. You don't judge a domestic violence victim fleeing for her life as mentally ill. You ask questions, gather facts and apply the law. You don't make up unsupported labels to conceal your behavior or anyone else's. You don't need to walk in someone's shoes to see where they are coming from. You ask.
It includes the ability to acknowledge your own experiences and the impact they have on your professional responsibilities. For example, as a rape victim I have had to work with juveniles that have raped other children. I can not let my experience of been a victim of sexual assault, and sexual battery determine my attitude towards those convicted of it in a professional setting. Personally, despite having received accolades from a therapist who worked exclusively with them- I am not a fan. Nothing will ever condone sexual assault much less of a child. However my personal feelings of disgust, and what I have been through myself as a sexual assault survivor should not cloud my professional conduct. You have to separate your experience from your job.
Learning to set that aside, just like having been a victim of Domestic Violence, committed by a police officer, when you are required to handle DV calls is a learned skill. Uncomfortable yes. Possibly triggering yes but personal judgement can not dictate your response to an event outside of your experience.
I was asked by an attorney in 2015, if I had ever been raped. I had but the crime was not reported to law enforcement only to the Office of Professional Responsibility when they were asking about my then ex boyfriend who was employed with Immigration Customs Enforcement. Having not reported it to local law enforcement, it having never been investigated, legally I had not been raped. It did not change I had, but because of the way it was ignored I did not look at it rape in the eyes of the law. It was, but the way I was treated that it was a less important than whatever OPR was investigating, and not acknowledged as such, I simply didn't from legal perspective see that without it having been reported to local law enforcement was rape- I was a juvenile probation officer when it happened and other than OPR when they asked to interview me about financial things he was doing no one knew.
No one stopped this attorney from asking a juvenile probation officer during a Disposition from asking personal questions unrelated to the case. I was told by the Court Supervisor I should not be offended and should have refused to answer. Which I couldn't because no one objected. So I answered as I was required to.
In 2018, I was sexually assaulted again. This time it was reported and the police department bungled the case. They did not contact me for 7 months after the report, they refused to allow me to make a statement and much to my shock threatened me by email never to speak to assigned investigators and then when I got a copy of the police report stated I didn't know who did it, said I asked them for a place, transportation and food. I asked for a detective to respond, to be allowed to sit in a squad car to make the report because I was having a panic attack and they were forcing me to write a statement in public outside of a Marta station. I asked them if there was a shelter I could go to and was told to go charge my phone at McDonald's. I hadn't eaten and had traveled 100's of miles to make the report. The report says that I couldn't identify the man who sexually assaulted me, but he was interviewed and his name appears on the report. If I didn't tell them who did it how could they interview him? Because they shoved a piece of paper in my hand and I wrote a detailed statement of the events, including a description of him and the events. They have never spoken to me except to ask me if I have a lawyer. Why does a sexual assault victim need a lawyer? Why are they not allowed to speak to the people investigating it? Why will they not take any information that would collaborate the statement, or request records for my checking account or iCloud account with his admission to it, or take the name of the doctor who did the assault kit? Because it is Brookhaven, Georgia.
That doesn't invalidate me being raped and revictimized, even more so by the police responding to it than being raped. It also is a police officer writing a false police report that can be validated by the statement I wrote, the body cam footage and his lack of even giving me a pamphlet with the case number on it. I didn't believe a report had even been made until I ordered a copy. A copy I was charged money for.
About the only thing my mother ever told me that was something I carried with me was yelling and screaming, bullying and pitching a fit gets you no where with normal people. You can advocate for yourself, report people's actions, you can disagree but demanding and screaming gets you no where. I spent years working with kids, I can count on one hand the number of times it erupted into them yelling at me-and never me at them. In fact they would defend me in court, to their parents and tell them I was trying to help. The moment you start yelling no one hears your words anymore. They hear your tone. Tone says it all.
However, violation of the law endangers me, every woman who may have a dead car battery, as he is employed still as tow truck driver. I carry the inability to get law enforcement to address my sexual assault for a lot of reasons. I was raped protecting their jobs, a battle I took upon myself because I believed the system worked- none of them have.
Second, I am afraid not only for my safety, and every woman who could have the unfortunate experience to cross paths with him because law enforcement won't do anything to investigate it. Nothing I have ever done was about hurting anyone, it was my expectation that I would be treated with respect and that be heard and was done with the sole aim to protect others.
I treated me juvenile probationers with more respect than any law enforcement officer has in over two years. I wanted to be a lawyer for first responders, but you can't do that when they protect rapists, sexual batterers, thieves and even through they are their blue family, so was I.
Creating trauma in someone is not how you garner their trust. Despite having been a law enforcement officer, a judicial officer I can never go back to where I considered home, because of fear of having to work with officers who have not been held accountable for their actions and continue to threaten me.
Calling people names, like drug addict, mentally ill, an alcoholic as Captain Craig Bogden with the Pooler Pd did, with no history of any of that, when I reached out for help to Chief Ashley Brown, a prostitute by convicted felons while that was not ever happening, rather than listen to facts about events that are criminal acts, solves nothing. I know none of these things are true, but feeling like every day I have to remind myself why they aren't true while no one does anything about actually criminal acts sadly done by law enforcement officers to cover up their wrongdoing does no one any good. I shouldn't have to gather documents to prove I am not the labels put on me by people who don't know me, and should be doing what they would do for any other human being who filed a complaint.
2.5 years ago when you asked me about law enforcement I would have told you how much I respected them, how much I wanted to help them and the men I dated who were amazing examples of law enforcement finest, the men I worked with, who I always found time to help even if it was the middle of the night from FBI agents, to a local police officer. Six months ago I would have told you they were a sheriff deputy in South Ga, a deputy in North GA who took me out to dinner not when I was dumped outside in the cold by a Lawarenceburg Sheriff Deputy.
Now I try to remember the handful who have not attacked me. I am ashamed to be part of the Ga Gang Investigators Association and quite frankly saddened about the choices if even Deputy Chiefs and Police Chiefs to hide the corruption in their department rather than do something about it. That should never be my response to seeing a law enforcement officer. I still will watch a traffic stop to make sure they are okay until back up arrives-because I am probably more qualified to help them if they need it, and I would- even if it was one who hurt me because I am not willing to let someone die just to be right.
I know how to see things from all sides. I knew how to be objective, and fair. That is why I wanted to go to law school. To help people, to make sure they got a chance to be heard, that they didn't have to carry the emotional trauma of trying to help people who have all ignored me when I needed their help.
Yet, I have no reason to believe that a majority of the very people I wanted to be a lawyer for are good- I get treated the opposite of what they should be doing and they are never held to answer for it. Including a Lawerenceburg sheriff deputy who had no problem leaving a battered woman in 19 degree weather. I would have told who before that if you asked that their SRO, Deputy Josh Arrowood, helped a friend of mine and I sent him an email thanking him. That I am worried about his safety because he didn't think to protect himself when threats were made to him.
I try very hard to not hold that against every officer- because not everyone of them did it or covered it up. However you will always see me look twice because of what has been done to me and taken from me by them. Ironically, if I could get them held accountable, I would use the money to fund a project for the good ones to be better. For the ones that have lost their careers because of political responses to nonsense accusations to give them a place where they do the job they love again. For them to share their wisdom in another generation of officers.
Perspective is not about making someone understand yours, it is about removing the bias and labeling and holding up to protect and serve. At the heart of every good Officer is a desire to make the community better and safer. They suffer an enormous burden of stress to dedicate their lives to public service. They struggle with so many burdens the average person does not see and often in silence. They carry enormous pain associated with their chosen profession. They live with scars the public never sees, like my friend, Chris and the death of his friend, David I can tell you death after death of a good officer, who lost their lives, whose families are never the same. Of children without fathers or mothers. They sacrificed for their community. Each one that carries a badge and has been the reason this is written, as the bad ones dishonor each of the lives sacrificed for an innocent. That is perspective.. and not one I should have had to live through with anyone not protecting me.