‘Walking While Black’ returns to QCSD

It is hoped that discussions following the viewing of the emotional documentary can lead to greater understanding and a more equitable community.
Posted on 01/14/2021
Poster for documentary "Walking While Black" with registration information.By Gary Weckselblatt

The Quakertown Community School District has scheduled a second screening of a solutions-focused documentary in which filmmakers examine racial profiling and the struggle it creates for minority communities.

The movie “Walking While Black: L.O.V.E. is the Answer” shines a light on the importance of reconciliation and healing between police and other members of the community. L.O.V.E. is an acronym for Learn about the community and the people in it, Open your heart to the humanity of people in the community, Volunteer yourself to be part of the solution, and Empower others to do the same.

It will be shown from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, January 26. The free program is intended to reach adults, high school-age students as well as mature 7th and 8th graders. Everyone of appropriate age is invited to attend, including families who live or attend school outside of Quakertown.

While last year’s program took place in the high school’s Performing Arts Center, this year’s event will be held online. Please register at www.thepeacecenter.org. A Zoom link will be sent upon your registration. The event is a partnership between The Peace Center, the Bucks County District Attorney’s office and QCSD.

“There’s never been a more important time for everyone to listen and try to understand one another,” said Kim Finnerty, an assistant principal at Quakertown Community High School. “We’ve seen what’s been happening with all of the racial tension for a very long time. At the same time, with the calls to defund the police, it adds to the stress the police have to deal with in many difficult situations.

“Respectful discourse is so important, and when students can have these conversations in a safe environment change can happen. I truly believe that today’s students are going to be the ones who make our society a more equitable one for all of us.”

Following the movie, there will be breakout sessions for discussions that include members of The Peace Center and police officers, including QCSD’s School Resource Officers Bob Lee and Brian Hendrzak

“I believe this is an important film for our students and community members to see,” Officer Lee said. “There’s no time better than now for us to work to bridge the gap between our police and minority communities.”

The movie by A.J. Ali and Errol Webber features interviews with law enforcement officers, as well as members of minority communities who share their experiences and a mission to build stronger police-community relationships.

Bucks County District Attorney Matt Weintraub said “Bucks County’s police officers are collectively the fairest and best in the business. But we in law enforcement must always be sensitive to public perceptions of our officers, especially negative ones. By viewing this film together, we are proactively demonstrating our desire to talk about these critical police perception issues with the public we serve, and our community-police relations will only grow stronger than they already are.”

Gary Weckselblatt, QCSD Director of Communications, writes about the people and the programs that impact the Quakertown Community School District. He can be reached at 215-529-2028 or gweckselblatt@qcsd.org
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