Baton Rouge Police Union meets with new mayor for first time

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - It was a successful first meeting between the Baton Rouge Police Union and East Baton Rouge Mayor-president Sharon Weston Broome.

Baton Rouge Police Union President Sgt. Bryan Taylor, Union Sgt. at Arms Sgt. Troy Lawrence, and Union Treasurer Sgt. Chad King walked into Mayor Weston Broome's office about 10:30 a.m. Friday for a closed door meeting. An hour and a half later, the men walked out, saying they are satisfied with the outcome.

"Great, great start. Great first meeting. We're pleased," said Sgt. Taylor.

As for the conversations they had in that meeting, Sgt. Taylor said, "Out of respect for the mayor and respect for the process, what we discussed in that meeting is going to remain private."

Sgt. Taylor would not say whether they discussed the police chief position, since Mayor Weston Broome, as recently as Monday, said her campaign promise of replacing BRPD Chief Carl Dabadie has not changed.

"My position has not changed," said Mayor Weston Broome.

"We got to know each other on a personal level, which is a huge first step," said Sgt. Taylor.

"The union members are police officers first and foremost," said Mayor Weston Broome in a news release. "After our conversation, I was assured that all of us want to work together to make this a safe community for all residents."

Prior to meeting with the police union, the mayor met with the East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner's Office for about half an hour, also for the first time since she took office. Coroner Dr. Beau Clark outlined for the mayor how his office works.

"How the opioid overdose crisis is affecting our community, a little bit about mental health work of the coroner and its relationship to the recent failed tax for the bridge center, and lastly, I talked about the future of the Central Assault Nursing Program," said Dr. Clark.

He said he wants to solidify that program and target opioid, or painkiller, abuse in order to prevent more deaths.

The mayor's role in all this? The city-parish provides the budget for the coroner's office. Both the coroner and union leaders said they expect more meetings in the future.

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