IOWA CITY, Iowa (KWWL) – An outreach assistant is helping police officers connect with community members in Iowa City.
“People that work with the police department are human, a lot of people see the badge first,” Daisy Torres said.
Torres is the second Community Outreach Assistant to work with the department. The position was created in 2015 as a part-time job and has since expanded. The department says Torres will be more focused on outreach than her predecessor.
“Growing up, I was taught I needed to give back,” Torres said. “Just making sure people are aware that resources are there to help them whether it’s through the police department or not.”
Torres is a non-sworn team member with the police department, and will not respond to service calls. Instead, she represents the department at community events, connects people with resources and hopes to reduce the stigma around police.
“We can break down some of those barriers so they feel comfortable calling us right away,” Sgt. Derek Frank with ICPD said. “She’s a community member and can give us a different perspective.”
Former Iowa City Community School District board member Henri Harper held the position before Torres. The city pays the assistant $43,846.40 per year, according to it’s website.