REDI

What is REDI?

REDI stands for race, equity, diversity and inclusion. In the wake of the killing of George Floyd on May 25, 2020 and the national discussion about racial equity and community/law enforcement relations, the Lakewood City Council approved the creation of a Lakewood community-wide dialogue and action plan.

Community Dialogue 

Interfaith Council Zoom meeting

Lakewood’s Community Dialogue is an ongoing process of communication among the City Council, residents and public safety officials with the goal of building on all the good in Lakewood and making our community the safest, most welcoming place it can be, for everyone.

The process began with assembling an Interfaith Council of Lakewood religious leaders to facilitate the dialogue and discuss related issues. Photo is from the first Interfaith Council meeting on REDI issues on July 2, 2020.

The broader Community Dialogue has been open to ALL Lakewood residents, not just those who are religious.

Over 200 residents have taken part and offered comments and suggestions. 

Community-Dialogue-Action-Plan-with-Updates-1-6-22.pdf(PDF, 116KB)

Progress Report on Community Dialogue & the Action Plan

Community-Dialogue-Action-Plan-with-Updates-1-6-22.pdf(PDF, 116KB)

Initial steps

The City Council received initial input from the community at the council meetings of June 9 and June 23, 2020 when a total of about 50 residents came, and many spoke about the issues of racial equity and community/law enforcement relations. Many were African-American residents, who all expressed affinity for Lakewood as a community but also recounted personal stories of experiencing racial discrimination.

One longtime resident was a retired L.A. County Deputy Sheriff who served at the Lakewood Sheriff’s Station for many years. He described times when he was stopped by Sheriff’s personnel while walking in Lakewood in civilian clothes, apparently because someone called in about a “suspicious black man walking in the neighborhood.” Another resident described her pain at having to tell her son never to walk to shopping areas with a group of other African-American boys because of her experience that they would be looked upon suspiciously and stopped by law enforcement.

“The feeling I got from these residents was not that Lakewood is a bad place,” said then-Mayor Todd Rogers in June 2020, “but rather a community, like many others around the nation that can do better in making sure that all of its residents are treated with equal respect under the law and equally embraced as fellow neighbors by all. We’ve started the process of our community dialogue and action plan in Lakewood and we look forward to continuing to report back to residents on our progress and on how they can get involved.”

Zoom Town Hall meetings

Two Zoom Town Hall meetings were held in September 2020 with over 100 Lakewood residents participating. 

Residents unable to participate in the Zoom Town Halls had the opportunity to submit written comments, anonymously if they wished.

Several religious congregations held discussions on racial equity topics on Sept. 26-27, 2020, creating a "Weekend of Dialogue" in Lakewood. Those comments and recommendations were forwarded to the Lakewood City Council for review.

Community Action Plan created

The Lakewood City Council integrated the comments and recommendations received from the Community Dialogue process into a multi-point Community Dialogue Action Plan (approved by the council on Jan. 26, 2021) that includes:

  1. Create a Council Committee on Race, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.
  2. Create a regular public Roundtable on Race, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.
  3. Create a Lakewood Multicultural Festival and Food Festival.
  4. Provide training on racial sensitivity and inclusion to City officials and staff.
  5. Enhance the City's work with teens on racial equity.
  6. Organize more community talks with the Sheriff's Department.
  7. Create neighborhood-level or park-level events for residents to meet their neighbors.
  8. Publicize the public complaint process for the Sheriff's Department and the business discrimination process of the state and federal governments.
  9. Unite members of different community groups in volunteer service projects.
  10. Educate residents on the city motto of "Times Change, Values Don't."

Community-Dialogue-Action-Plan-with-Updates-1-6-22.pdf(PDF, 116KB)


Calendar commemorations

  • Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday (Jan.)
  • Black History Month (Feb.)
  • Women's History Month (March)
  • Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month (May)
  • Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Pride Month (June)
  • Juneteenth Day (June)
  • National Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15 - Oct. 15)
  • National Disability Awareness Month (Oct.)
  • Native American Heritage Month (Nov.)

Use of Force Policy Review

As part of the City of Lakewood’s Community Dialogue, the city gathered resident input about the Use of Force Policy of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, which is the law enforcement agency for the City of Lakewood. 

Note: This policy is carried out county-wide by the Sheriff’s Department. It is not a policy of the City of Lakewood. 

Cities around the nation are carrying out community reviews such as this as part of a periodic best-practice recommended by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing.

The Lakewood City Council reviewed input on that policy and provided feedback to the Sheriff’s Department.

To date, a City Council committee has reviewed the Use of Force Policy and the initial input provided by Lakewood residents, which included comments from residents both critical and supportive of the policy. With that input, the City Council has issued initial Draft Findings and Recommendations about the Use of Force Policy, which you can view below.

Draft-findings-on-Use-of-Force-Policy.pdf(PDF, 138KB)