SAVANNAH, GA. (May 7, 2014): Tuesday, Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Department’s Latino Officer Outreach Program (L.O.O.P.) launched a telephone line manned around-the-clock by Spanish-speaking officers to aide Spanish-speaking citizens in utilizing Metro’s emergency and non-emergency services.

LO.O.P. currently has six active members who voluntarily share the responsibility of translating Spanish to English at police incidents, responding to SCMPD-related service inquiries by Spanish-speaking citizens, and building relationships with Chatham County’s Hispanic community to reduce crime. The goal of this program is to make the Spanish-speaking community aware of SCMPD’s lesser known services and resources for meeting their needs, by eliminating barriers in the areas of language and cultural understanding.

L.O.O.P. coordinator, Ofc. Enrique Marquez said, “This is Metro’s way of making sure no citizen feels isolated from our services. We hope to change the mindset of anyone who saw the inability to speak English as a roadblock to reaching us.”

Metro’s Spanish-language hotline can be reached at (912) 677-7596.

L.O.O.P. members will be available to discuss Metro’s new Spanish-language phone line, and the program’s purpose and goals, at 2 p.m., Wednesday, May 7, at Police Headquarters, 201 Habersham Street.