Local Man Searching to Help Protester’s PO Dream Come True
EDIT: We have helped identify the man. Thank you to our listeners who shared the message!
Hundreds of people turned out for a peaceful protest in Oneida Square on Sunday. Signs were held, chants were chanted demanding justice for George Floyd, who died after being pinned to the ground by police in Minnesota.
Protesters from all over the Mohawk Valley took to social media to document the rally, with speeches being filmed live for others to view on Facebook and Instagram.
Brian Jweid, Director of Civil Service Administration for Oneida County, was one of the many who tuned in to see what was going on at the site of the protest, and came across a particular man who has a dream - and he wants to help.
"...A young man stood between the protestors and the cops in front of the police station and expressed his gratitude of everyone coming out to support the cause and how his childhood dream was to become a cop and either never did move forward with it or his dream changed. But his emotion of not fulfilling that goal got to me."
Jweid said he's sure that there's many others in the community who are in the same position as the man during the protest. That have a dream of doing something but unsure on how to go about accomplishing it, and as a community - it's our job to help. And that's exactly what he wants to do for this mystery man.
He's looking for the man in hopes of providing guidance and support, not acting on behalf of Oneida County, but his own personal intent.
"If I can talk to this young man, find out his current goals and if becoming a cop is still a dream of his, I would like to help mentor him on the process and encourage him to achieve his goal. Our civil service exam is for the Oneida County Sheriff’s Office and all the towns and villages besides the City of Rome and Utica. But it is all the same process that I can help with. I can’t just give him anything but I can help provide him guidance and support to help achieve a dream."
"Sometimes you don’t know that someone needs help or how to help unless they say something. I’m not 100% sure how bridge the gap with this current issue. But if I can at least help make a difference with one person to start, it will be a step in the right direction."
If you happen to be the man standing next to the officer in the photo above, Jweid is eager to have a conversation with you. Or maybe you know him, pass the message along. Jweid can be reached over Facebook Messenger, via email at email@example.com or by phone at 315-798-5471.
Even if you aren't the man from the protest yesterday, know that there are people and resources out there. Pathways to Justice Careers helps high school juniors and seniors prepare for post-secondary education and entering the workforce.
They focus on careers in the criminal justice or emergency services fields and match up participants with a positive role model to provide additional support as they become young adults. They can secure a paid summer internship with local law enforcement and public safety agencies, such as: the Utica Police Department, Utica Fire Department, Oneida County Sheriff’s Department, Oneida County Probation Department, and Oneida County Emergency Medical Services.
If you know someone interested in Pathways to Justice Careers by visiting online or by contacting Stephanie Heiland at 315-793-6095 or firstname.lastname@example.org.