mike butler

mike butler.png

intro’d to Mike via Peter here:

47 min – mike butler police chief in longmont changed my life

dang.. the blessed irony (hopefully)

from community:


mike butler – mike has been inventing community policing for a couple of decades. he runs the police dept in longmont co..  which s based on the insight that safety comes from building a strong community.. w law and order as a backup strategy.. here is a recent note from him that gives a hint at what he is up to: ‘our local restorative justice project has evolved to a whole diff level.. we are on the front end of turning our criminal justice system in our area into a restorative justice system..

taking him in here now.. still public safety chief – 1 hr interview from 2018 (interview with Scott Converse – age: 57 Occupation: Founder and president of TinkerMill..My family moved to Longmont (from Minnesota) when I was 7. My dad was one of the original employees at the IBM plant located between Longmont and Boulder. his site: http://www.scottconverse.com/)%5Bhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yh-wqi7WjH4]

been here for 40 yrs.. 5 daughters all went to lhs.. public chief for last 9 yrs.. prior police chief for 15 yrs.. prior city of boulder police

to 8 min – about public safety

8 min – q: on militarization

10 min – never had a shooting out of our swat team

11 min – might look big.. but for community safety


12 min – q: on bias – how to make sure police force have solid awareness on own bias

we all come w deficiencies/weaknesses..  people tend to shut down when told have deficiencies/weaknesses

block deficiency law

13 min – (dan benavides) came at if from gifts you have to offer.. besides latino community we have folks struggling w addiction, mental health, poverty.. potentially marginalized by our community.. and

i would rather have our staff working w those folks from a perspective of seeing them as having gifts and not necessarily seeing them as a problem to be solved

assume good


14 min – a lot of the implicit bias training comes across as a model as there are people in the room are a problem to be solved.. and they look at them thru the lens that there is something going on inside of you that you have to fix

rowson mechanical law

mufleh humanity law

dan came at it from a perspective of.. you have all of these great talents/gifts.. so what that helped us do was model that.. and we began to look at people differently

15 mi – we’re not looking at people as problem to be solved or thru their deficiencies.. we’re looking at them as people who have gifts to offer the rest of us

and our goal in public safety.. is to try to figure out how to get them on that path so that they can offer those gifts to the rest of us

try this man – short bp – w 2 convers as infra

i know that doesn’t sound like a traditional safety role.. but we’ve been coming at this from the criminal justice criminalizing perspective for way too many years.. the war on drugs.. the war on a lot of social issues.. the criminalization of homelessness/addiction/mental health..

home less ness.. addiction.. mental health.. there’s a nother way.. for all of us

you ask any sheriff in this state/country.. and they will tell you that they are the biggest mental health ward in their county.. about 80% of the folks they have housed in their prisons/jails struggle w either addiction and/or mental health…

16 min – we’re coming at it from an entirely diff perspective.. rather than arresting.. we refer to angel initiative.. started in jan 2017 – basically we opened our doors to anybody who is struggling w an addiction we will find them treatment.. so far 80 people have come in.. connect them w angels.. serve as taxi for them.. and employers that employee them..  then some people getting community to embrace addiction..  as a disease


via ab – housing first: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Housing_First

18 min – q: procedural justice

19 min – i would call it restorative justice.. responsibility/respect/reintegration.. bev title started it over 20 yrs ago.. over the yrs we’ve referred over 6000 people that we could have arrested .. our criminal justice recidivism rate is around 60-65%.. for that 6000 people.. the recidivism rate has been less than 10%.. we give them that opp to choose accountability

ugh.. accountability ness

23 min – q: take it from the other side.. on police force being accountable – how do you foster that

much of what a police officer does is on the run.. about 90% of time operating on their own.. ensure via hiring.. if you have an ounce of violence in background.. we don’t hire.. we feel we’ve developed a culture of accountability.. ie: i don’t demand or hold or legislate or try to purchase w rewards.. accountability.. we expect our people to choose accountability..

28 min – q: tech like metrics.. what objective metrics to measure accountability

30 min – q: tech like body cameras

31 min – not yet.. the focus on police from ie: ferguson et al.. has been good.. but a lot of people jumped on thinking body cameras would increase transparency/relationships.. what we’ve seen.. outcomes for those who use them.. a lot of policy/tech issues.. we’re going to go to them.. but want to ensure all things that need to be worked out have been resolved.. because it’s expensive.. $40 000 a year.. and we just haven’t had the (trust/skill) issues here.. probably next 6-12 months

33 min – q: police unions

34 min – on having open meetings.. but price for your voice is that you have to have an agenda that’s bigger than your self interest.. has to be the good of the whole

36 min – q: homeless issues – gotten worse over years

he’s right in terms of worse part – last 10-12 yrs.. i’m talking about chronically homeless.. about 350 now.. summertime number.. police and fire that has sapped a lot of our resources about 50% in summer.. that’s the reactive.. people calling in .. someone sleeping in doorway..intoxicated.. afraid..  et al

home less ness

38 min – this is not an easy issue.. and longmont is not unique.. it’s a societal problem.. we’re a community of 100 000 and the larger your community gets more likely to take on similar characteristics..  what’s also going on w the homeless is addiction and mental health..

39 min – so not only back to angel initiative.. but recently longmont safety received 2 fairly large grants to deal w folks struggling w addiction beyond the angel initiative w addiction.. and their mental health.. we’re going to be able to hire a number of people who will proactively work w people struggling w mental health and addiction.. we’re not just going to react.. as we’ve done in the past..  out of those 80 people i mentioned.. 1/2 are struggling w homeless ness

this is you ab

40 min – i have to support the rhetoric we use around folks.. we’re trying to get out of the business of labeling.. those labels.. you’re defining them w a problem to be solved.. that’s why we did angel initiative.. and why we applied for these grants.. and by the way .. these could be long ongoing grants..

just label daily cure ios city man

41 min – the money that supplies these grants comes from the state tax on marijuana

42 min – we’ve been in the business of trying to solve problems.. and one of the metrics we use.. is where we have a problem place .. our effectiveness is gaged by the lack of (the communities) need for us.. our goal is to assure we’re not as needed in the future..

43 min – we want to provide a service where they don’t have to come constantly in contact w police.. we have people who have had 400-500 contacts police/fire.. 100s of hospital visits.. we could move up stream and be more proactive.. so people can find a way of living their lives where they don’t rely on us

q: tax funds going to public safety..

62% voted for that.. 1 penny on every $25.. will raise 6 mn more.. used to hire police.. people who can work more w animal control.. w traffic.. a couple fire fighters

48 min – q: what does police dept look like

right now.. we have 100 000 people 36 000 households .. usually we have 9-10 officer on the street (takes 5.1 officers to fill a 24/7 position).. 6 fire stations.. 23 fighters on duty 24/7.. save dollars by getting their fast and suppressing fires.. we don’t have many .. also skilled w hazardous chemicals.. tech difficulties.. and emts.. that effects everyone’s insurance rates

52 min – capacity to revive those w heart attacks is 48%.. national is 9-11%

53 min – q: misconduct in police dept

2016 – we had 6.. 2017 we had 9 – community committee reviews these.. hs kids part of hiring panels

58 min – 100 000 people is a tremendous amount of social capital – it’s the gifts/talents/resources/expertise/skills of people w/in this community we happen to believe it’s an untapped resource

59 min – so as we work w these social/health issues.. we believe our community can act as a resource as well to help us w that.. in the angel initiative we’ve done a lot of that already.. what i didn’t mention before.. we’ve leveraged over 1 mn dollars in free treatment.. we have angels from community that support the services (taxi, employ).. we are really trying to tap into the social capital

hope you’re legit there.. sincere legit.. because what we need most is the energy of 7bn alive people.. in the city.. as the day..

myself and dan benavidez have been walking neighborhoods for about 4 yrs.. and every person we talk to we invite to be part of the solution.. we now have police/firefighters walking and inviting.. so  this is not traditionally a role for public safety.. ie: what they can offer.. to become more engaged..


1:00 so we’ve put a process in place where we’re going to be asking people in our community to step up and be part of making this community what it can be

yeah.. you’ll get some.. but that’s not a sustainable/thrivable way to tap into social capital..

1:01 – new defn of greatness: by the content of our goodness..


as it could be..

2 convers.. as infra

ie: hlb via 2 convers that io dance.. as the day..[aka: not part\ial.. for (blank)’s sake…]..  a nother way

what we need most is the energy of 7bn alive people to get us back/to an undisturbed ecosystem


july 2018 article on ideas to help homeless in community


The following is an email forwarded to the Longmont Observer from Deputy Chief Jeff Satur. The original email came from Public Safety Chief Mike Butler. The email was sent in hopes to add clarification to the term “Toxic Charity.”

Good Day Everyone,

There has been some mixed reaction to the phrase “Toxic Charity.” For those of us who use this phrase, it does have meaning and purpose that we believe can help all of us determine our best course of action in serving and helping others.

The phrase, “Toxic Charity” comes from a book entitled curiously, “Toxic Charity,” written by Robert D. Lupton.

Attached are some excerpts from the book. As one will see from reading these excerpts, there is a heavy dose of compassion mixed in with encouraging responsibility.

It is also in alignment with the phrase, “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man how to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.”


dan benavidez and mike


Our Belonging Revolution is the ultimate do-it-yourself movement.

not quite.. not ultimate.. this would be ultimate.. cure ios city

rev of everyday life

belonging revolution

to belong rev

The vast majority of the people we have contacted on our neighborhood walks want to become more engaged and are willing to jump on the commitment and accountability bandwagon that serves the good of the whole.

dang.. no those.. wish we could talk

We have begun to experience a certain alchemy associated with this sense of belonging that people so urgently want to feel

All of us together can attend to the gifts and capacity of all others and act to bring the gifts of those on the margin and elsewhere to our community.

to get there to the max.. begs tech as it could be..


on home less ness

from longmont home less ness:

from video on homeless 1 hr community convo – aug 29 2018 – starts at 24 min


24 min – council – in 20 yrs our goal is that longmont would be the world’s greatest village where children will be most fortunate to be born and raised.. where people will have access to food.. shelter.. and *everyone.. everyone..  **has opp to thrive and feel like they belong.. you have a council that’s committed to tackle this global issue on a very local level..

*has to be all of us

begs **a quiet revolution

Mike on homeless ness in longmont – jun 2016


30 min video:

865 struggling w homeless ness.. public safety is just about overwhelmed w response/resources for folks struggling w homelessness.. about 50%.. over 50% use of force are w people struggling w homelessness

7 min – our community needs to respond to this in a way we haven’t in past.. i saw this out of love for community.. we need to figure out how to stem the tide..

9 min – we need to come up with some solutions we haven’t thought of before

try something really diff.. ie: to belong rev

10 min – i think there’s an important ingredient in responding to homeless ness that we are missing.. accountability.. if you want a service.. you ought to be able to work for it

accountability.. a killer

12 min – i think we’ve gotten to level of accommodating a lifestyle of homelessness – w/o recip accountability.. lends to degrading community.. also lends to why this community has been a magnet..

loveland (most places) says the same thing.. i think we have to go deeper

not so much about being a magnet as there being more home less

13 min – i think if they know they have to work for it.. we’re positively impacting dignity of people.. that’s a missing link w a lot of folds.. missing dignity

dignity doesn’t come from work for pay

we don’t want to disempower because we’re giving something and expecting nothing

what we want is their art.. for that we need no strings.. we need spaces of permission where people have nothing to prove

disempower ment comes from having an agenda/expectation w a person

16 min – if we say – if get things in longmont have to work for it.. i think we could stem the tide of folks coming in.. and i think this community would react differently if they knew people were working for services.. ie: we don’t want to contribute to that sense of *entitlement


*entitlement is in thinking you have say over whether another human being should have food and shelter.. money and property is a made up construct.. in a game gone mad..

17 min – if people knew they were working toward giving *something back

huge.. if we let them decide what that is

ie: gershenfeld something else law

18 min – we will only serve those who have roots in longmont – angel initiative

22 min – on other two initiatives..

27 min – we have to come up w something much diff.. we need to somehow impact the dignity of people *in a way that they want to choose accountability/responsibility.. they want to give back to this community.. i also think we can say.. **not going to get service unless willing to give back

huge.. *those are two diff things.. if you free them up to do their art they/we can’t not give back..if you enforce .. by *various strings.. none of this will fly for the long haul.. ie: you’re just doing what we’ve always done..



find/follow Mike:

public safety chief page on longmont site


The Public Safety Chief is responsible for the overall direction of the Department of Public Safety, which includes the services provided out of the Public Safety Chief’s Office as well as the department’s four major divisions: Police Services, Fire Services, and Support Services.

The Public Safety Chief ensures that all employees comply with mandated federal and state laws, municipal ordinances, Colorado POST standards (police) and National Fire Protection Association Codes and Standards.

The Public Safety Chief provides oversight and direction for services provided out of his office.  This service ensures that all Public Safety Department divisions, sections, units, offices and teams are appropriately responsive to our community and that our employees are serving within the context of all six of the initiatives in the Focus on Longmont Plan.

can’t find email anywhere.. sent in format email via longmont site.. there is an email on belonging site


from f to f convo in sept 2018 – talked about findings


40 min podcast w jj zepp


purpose of walks – 1\ help people to feel they belong to community  2\ ask them to make an investment.. so.. surfacing and activating social capital

jj bringing up council could to be best community

brian bagley’s intro to longmont home less ness mtg et al

10 min – lead and core – addiction

31 min – there’s a lot of people who want to help – 180 walks.. met 3000 people

healthy relationships most healing factor in struggles

almaas holes law

37 min – we’ve got to rethink the institutions


steve desmond w jj zepp


26 min – jj – on not being able to get out of addiction..

2015 – steve- had 3 tragic events – fetal steal, son killed parents, and one other.. got core and lead and angel initiative.. to help people get clean, housing, job

30 min – if built a jail .. we’d fill it in no time.. but would be sweeping under rug..

build housing instead ie: living spaces

jj – i as owned by dope.. if i can change.. (4 months clean).. why i’m clean went to a 12 step and heard a gal that was talking to a cop .. then i did.. with you (steve)..  so hoping this podcast brings hope.. helping me w assumptions i had.. ie: can’t talk to cop about addictions/crime

33 min – steve: all the things police expected to do.. counseling.. homeless ness.. you know a non criminal activity

really..? seems we criminalize it a ton ie: unauthorized home less ness

jj: if everybody that needed help got help..  they have to have that want to stop.. there’s help out there

but we need to nip the lag time.. the putting people on hold.. w/o resources.. that’s killer


macie may w jj zepp – sept 2018


11 min – the disease isn’t my responsibility.. but the recovery definitely is

22 min – on probation.. if i break .. 8 yrs

rest same of first two podcasts.. ie: shooting bird at 7, talking w steve (cop), to mike butler to brian bagley (mayor), .. only way i can keep what i have is by giving it away.. ie: helping others

26 min – being able to separate shame and guilt has been very massive for me.. i am stupid vs i did something stupid