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FBI faces its own racial reckoning while leading probes into police shooting deaths

June 10, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.

Compression ratio: 17.1%. 2 min read.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation just unveiled a newly created position to tackle its decades-old diversity problem: chief diversity officer.

And just 4. 7% of the roughly 13,500 special agents at the FBI identify as Black or African American, the agency says.

Yet while the FBI's new chief diversity officer position is historic, it reports to the associate deputy director, not FBI Director Christopher Wray, a personnel structure that diversity advocates have criticized.

McMillion officially became chief diversity officer on May 4, moving to the FBI's headquarters in Washington from the Columbia, South Carolina, field office where he was assistant special agent in charge.

"We're reaching out to those underserved communities who haven't ever considered the FBI for a career or a job," McMillion said.

McMillion started his career at the FBI in 1998 as a special agent in Omaha, Nebraska, where he says he was the only Black agent in all of Nebraska plus the neighboring state of Iowa.

"I felt alone a lot," said Eric Jackson, a retired special agent in charge for the FBI's Dallas field office.

Jackson was the only Black special agent in training in his FBI Academy class in 1997.

Jackson is now co-chairman of the MIRROR Project, an organization of retired Black special agents who are voicing their diversity concerns to the top leadership at the FBI.

"As a Black male special agent in charge of the 12th largest division of the FBI, I was able to get into communities that didn't want to have anything to do with law enforcement.

Wray did put out a statement announcing McMillion's hiring in April, saying, "Scott is the right person to ensure that the FBI fosters a culture of diversity and inclusion, and that our workforce reflects all the communities we serve. "

"The senior leadership at the FBI, to include Director Wray, are very much committed personally to the mission of diversity, equity and inclusion," McMillion said.

Wray also promoted Emmerson Buie Jr. in September 2019 to become the first Black agent to lead the FBI's Chicago field office, and 17 of the special agents in charge leading the FBI's 56 field offices are minorities.

by summa-bot

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