Minneapolis, MN — On Sunday, the Minneapolis City Council announced a plan to disband the police department. A 9 member veto-proof majority voted in favor of the measure. Activists have been calling for such measures in the past few weeks.
The move comes after George Floyd lost his life while in police custody. Riots across the country have erupted demanding change. City Council President Lisa Bender made the following statement in remarks about the move.
“Our commitment is to end our city’s toxic relationship with the Minneapolis Police Department, to end policing as we know it and to re-create systems of public safety that actually keep us safe.” – Lisa Bender
The council has announced they will invest in community-led safety measures as a means to ensure safety and protection in their community. The mayor did not agree with the actions by the city council. Mayor Jacob Frey made this statement.
“I’ll work relentlessly with Chief Arradondo and alongside community toward deep, structural reform and addressing systemic racism in police culture. And we’re ready to dig in and enact more community-led, public safety strategies on behalf of our city. But I do not support abolishing the Minneapolis Police Department.” – Mayor Jacob Frey
It is unclear what community-led measures will look like. Some have suggested that de-escalation training and conflict resolution measures will help. Unarmed safety teams have also been suggested as part of these steps.
How an unarmed safety team utilizing de-escalation measures will protect the citizens is unknown. Without a police force, violent crime will have the ability to run rampant. Citizens of Minneapolis will be eager to hear the plan as their safety and peace of mind hangs in the balance.
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