South Florida

South Florida Church Leaders Meet With Local Law Enforcement

Church leaders in South Florida are addressing the strained relationship between law enforcement and members of the black community.

Outside of the Faith Center in Sunrise, Sheriff Scott Israel is met with a big hug and friendly reminder Sunday, after a difficult week.

"My goal is for the community not to see an African American officer or Hispanic officer or a female officer or White officer. Just to see an officer who is there to do their job," said Israel.

Inside, police, community and clergy join hands for a unity prayer.

"We pray for comfort and support for the families of those who have lost their loved ones whether by the hands of police officers or civilians killing police officers," said Pastor Henry Fernandez.

Pastor Henry Fernandez says the death of Alton Sterling, Philando Castile and the men and women in Dallas is a reminder that our country is struggling.

"They're saying bishop what do we do? What do I tell my sons when they are stopped by the police? We have to give them answers," says Pastor Fernandez.

Each elected official and officer at shares their message. For Sheriff Israel, it's one of transparency within the community he serves.

Sheriff Israel adds: "I have a person coming in to teach our officers about deescalation. We're going to hire a consultant firm or bring in the department of justice and ask them to watch our trainers train and tell us everything we're doing right and if they're are recommendations, make those them so we can police the way we need to police."

The Sunday service focused on equality, justice and progress.

Pastor Fernandez says he hopes at the end of the day we're not just talking, we're not just protesting, but that we will have an outcome of that will bring community together.

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