Though the format was the same, the mood was decidedly different for Pittsburgh Police Chief Cameron McLay’s third meeting with city residents since coming to town—it was welcoming.
The third Community Conversation, held at Project Destiny on the North Side on Dec. 19, began, after welcoming remarks from Rev. Brenda Gregg, with a breakfast of eggs, bacon, potatoes, grits and fresh fruit.
After that, there we’re more welcoming remarks from representatives of the meeting’s sponsors; Tim Stevens and Valerie Dixon, Esther Bush, Diane Powell and Rick Adams, all of whom congratulated McLay on his official swearing in before turning the question and answer portion of the meeting over to WPXI-TV anchor Lisa Sylvester.
McLay himself was congratulatory as well, praising his command staff for the way they handled the protests in the wake of the Ferguson and New York grand jury rulings, and for engaging in the kind of outreach—without any prodding from him—that he said is needed to patch up relations between the bureau and the community.
An example of which came in answer to the first question: “What are the rules, and what are one’s rights during an arrest?”