A veto-proof majority on the Minneapolis City County announced their intent to dismantle the city’s police department on Sunday in response to the murder of George Floyd by four former city officers.
According to The New York Times, the nine council members promised to create a new system of public safety in a city where law enforcement has long been accused of racism.
“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,” Minneapolis City Council President Lisa Bender said Sunday via KARE11.
The pledge comes after multiple entities including the University of Minnesota and Minneapolis Public Schools elected to suspend or limit their relationship with the department.
“It shouldn’t have taken so much death to get us here,” said Kandace Montgomery, the director of Black Vision, via NYT. “We’re safer without armed, unaccountable patrols supported by the state hunting Black people.”
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey said yesterday during a protest he was against the full abolition of police. His answer resulted in his immediate dismissal from the protest with “go home Jacob go home” and “Shame” being shouted as he left.
“If you’re asking whether I’m for massive structural reform to revise a structurally racist system the answer is ‘yes,’” said Mayor Frey after his dismissal to WCCO.
He continued: “If you’re asking whether I will do everything possible to push back on the inherent inequities that are literally built into the architecture the answer is ‘yes’. If you’re asking whether I’m willing to do everything I possibly can throughout the rest of my term to make sure that the police union, the police contract, the arbitration system, and some of these policies that have resulted in problems for specifically Black and Brown people and murder over series of generations, I’m all for that. I’m not for abolishing the entire police department, I will be honest about that.”
According to The New York Times, council members said that they did not have specific plans to announce yet for what a new public safety system would look like, but will soon.