What Do Participants Say?

"When that kid used to see me, he would give me a look and spit on the ground. Now he says hi. To me that's progress."

- Police Officer from Jackson Sq./Hyde Sq./Egleston Sq Dialogue

"The police are cool. I went to a police dialogue and I understand where they’re coming from."

- Teenage male participant from South End / Lower Roxbury dialogue

"I was out at Fields Corner last week where I usually am and I saw some of the kids from the dialogue. I thought they might pretend they don't know me because it's not cool to know a cop. They came over with some other friends to say hi."

- Police Officer

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Youth/Police Dialogues

YW Boston’s Youth/Police Dialogues program creates a safer Boston for all by engaging young people and police to repair broken trust and build a strong relationship between the community and the police who have taken an oath to serve and protect them. The Dialogues help to curb conflict and increase trust and cooperation in neighborhoods of Boston most affected by violence and crime. Set up a Dialogue with the youth at your school or organization today to help everyone in your community feel safe.  

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Youth/Police Dialogues bring together racially and ethnically diverse groups of local youth and police officers for interactive dialogue sessions conducted by professional facilitators. A lack of meaningful communication between youth and police is a serious public safety concern. We seek to improve these relationships by helping participants break down stereotypes and communication barriers and build mutual respect and understanding.

Who participates in the Youth/Police Dialogues?

Each Dialogue has 15-25 youth (ages 12-19), 4-6 police officers, and 2 professional facilitators. Youth and officers are recruited from the same neighborhood so they continue to have positive interactions outside the formal dialogue space. Facilitators are trained and receive ongoing coaching and feedback. 

What is discussed?

The Dialogues cover stereotypes, community concerns, the "stop snitching" culture, and how to work together. The topics and scenarios are carefully selected and honed to elicit the most honest and productive discussion about the most critical issues.

Where do they happen?

Youth/Police Dialogues are happening all over the city of Boston. We have a higher volume of dialogues happening in Roxbury and Dorchester. We partner with schools, community centers, churches, and any youth serving agencies to host a Dialogue.

When are they happening?

Youth/Police Dialogues are scheduled all year round, both during and after school. 



To speak to someone about Youth/Police Dialogues, contact Mica Warton at 617-585-5421.