Miami Heat

Heat Team Up With Miami Police to Build Relationships With Communities of Color

A basketball initiative with City of Miami Police to reach communities of color

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The Miami Police Department is now getting trained by playing basketball with kids in the community.

The Miami Heat and nonprofit Dedication to Community, or D2C, created an initiative with the police department to build better relationships with local communities.

"The Miami Heat made a pledge that we were going to use our very unique position in this community and the platform that we have to effect change," Michael McCullough of the Miami Heat said.

"(The initiative) not only brings the police but brings the community together to try to de-escalate and bring unity at a time when division was at an all-time high," Miami Police Chief Manny Morales added.

Two years ago, a pilot program that trained 75 Miami Police officers in bridging the gap between Black and Latino communities went into effect. Now, almost 500 officers and staff members have been trained.

As of Thursday morning, the program is expanding with basketball. 

"To heal the connection between the community and law enforcement and how genius to use the game of basketball to do that?" Miami Heat legend Alonzo Mourning said.

Wilson Sporting Goods donated 1,000 basketballs so that each Miami police officer can have one in their car and be able to play a quick game of pickup basketball in the communities they patrol.

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