East Haven Mayor Maturo Apologizes for “Taco” Comment

Talk about quick.

Less than 24 hours after WPIX TV caught him with a "taco" comment as a way to improve his city's relations with Latino community amid news that four of his officers were arrested for racial profiling, East Haven Mayor Joseph Maturo has apologized for his comments, the New Haven Register today.

“My sincerest apologies go out to the East Haven community and, in particular, the Latino community for the insensitive and off-collar comment that I made to WPIX reporter Mario Diaz yesterday regarding the recent events affecting our community and our police department.

Unfortunately, I let the stress of the situation get the best of me and inflamed what is already a serious and unfortunate situation. I regret my insensitive comment and realize that it is my job to lead by example,” Maturo said, going on to explain he created a new oversight committee for Police Department improvements that includes a member of the Latino community.

“My sincerest apologies go out to the East Haven community and, in particular, the Latino community for the insensitive and off-collar comment that I made to WPIX reporter Mario Diaz yesterday regarding the recent events affecting our community and our police department.

He asked that the community “have faith in me” and that residents work together to move forward.

“I am dedicated to the principles of tolerance and acceptance of all and will do all that I can to foster those principles in the daily execution of my duties as Mayor. I ask this community to have faith in me and in our community as we address the challenges arising,” Maturo said in the statement.

The full statement was put on this Facebook page:

“My sincerest apologies go out to the East Haven community and, in particular, the Latino community for the insensitive and off-collar comment that I made to WPIX reporter Mario Diaz yesterday regarding the recent events affecting our community and our police department. Unfortunately, I let the stress of the situation get the best of me and inflamed what is already a serious and unfortunate situation. I regret my insensitive comment and realize that it is my job to lead by example. 

Our community needs to refocus on healing together. To date, my administration has already taken steps to begin that healing process. Most recently, I commissioned a new advisory committee to the Mayor named “LEARN” (Law Enforcement Advisory Resource Network) aimed at recommending updates to policies and procedures to the Board of Police Commissioners. Recognizing the need for the Latino community to have a voice on this exciting and important new board, I appointed Jose Velasquez, a well-respected community volunteer and native of Puerto Rico, to the board. The first products of that committee have been a new mission statement for our Police Department, a more accessible civilian complaint procedure, and the publishing of updated civilian complaint forms in both English and Spanish. 

I recognize that this new board is just the first of many steps that must be taken to heal our community. I apologize, again, for my insensitive comments yesterday and recognize that they are a hindrance to the progress that must be made in our community. I am dedicated to the principles of tolerance and acceptance of all and will do all that I can to foster those principles in the daily execution of my duties as Mayor. I ask this community to have faith in me and in our community as we address the challenges arising out of the past days’ events.”

For additional information, please contact the East Haven Mayor’s office at 203-468-3204.

UPDATE: HUFF POST LATINO VOICES POSTED THE ENTIRE RAW VIDEO OF WPIX INTERVIEW:

 

 

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