Mayor Wheeler releases statement on use of Gunshot Detection Technology (GDT) in Portland

News Article

Upon receiving a recommendation from the Focused Intervention Team Community Oversight Group to implement gunshot detection technology (GDT) as part of the City’s gun violence effort, Mayor Wheeler and Chief Lovell sought to explore a proposal for Council approval to implement a pilot program in Portland.   

As the concept of a pilot was discussed, it became clear that there were multiple viewpoints and substantial community interest in the use of GDT in Portland, and that the process would benefit from following procurement procedures to evaluate various forms of GDT.  The Mayor’s team engaged with the community in a variety of ways to hear the many varying perspectives on GDT.  The team received direct communication from community, attended public meetings and town halls, ensured the public was able to engage in the procurement process at a town hall with the top two proposers, and worked with researchers at Portland State University to conduct a community survey.  The survey results are being released with this statement. 

The Mayor and Chief determined now was not the time to proceed with a pilot proposal for GDT.  This decision was based on community input, current staffing challenges at PPB, and the City’s plan to move forward with building our comprehensive gun violence strategy through Portland Ceasefire, partnership with Cure Violence Global to expand our street level outreach, and ongoing Office of Violence Prevention investments.  The Mayor and Chief agree that the topic should be revisited in the future at a time when PPB staffing can better support GDT and we have the benefit of evaluating the results of our current efforts.   

The Mayor and Chief want to express their sincere appreciation to all the community members who shared their perspectives about GDT and acknowledge that there are many differing views on this issue.  We recognize and value the tremendous work put into making recommendations from community members on the FITCOG, community members on PCCEP, and the many individuals who provided feedback through other means.