DANVILLE, Ill. (WCIA) — The acting police chief was appointed and sworn in as chief at Tuesday’s city council meeting.
“I think we’ve got to look at what we’re doing moving forward,” Yates said after he took his oath. “I’m quite humbled looking around.”
Later during the meeting, Former alderman Lloyd Randle spoke during public comments and said he opposed Yates’ appointment. He said there should have been a broader national search. He was particularly concerned about the lack of diversity.
“We should be looking to diversify our department,” he said. “It was amazing to watch who was in the back of the room tonight, and I challenge you, sir: diversify your department – gender, race – because you’re dealing with a whole different community. It’s very complex, and you need people on the street that understand who they’re dealing with.”
After the meeting, Yates said he’s been going to local high schools, speaking with the NAACP and NOBLE (the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives) regarding the latest round of police applications.
“It can’t be blamed on the police and fire board, it can’t be blamed on the city council,” Yates said. “Because first, we have to have applicants that are African American or minority. We had none.”
Yates said he appreciated Randle bringing it up.
“If it’s his perception, maybe it’s someone else’s as well and we need to address that.”