Campaign: Yes! For Minneapolis
Our union is proud to be part of Yes 4 Minneapolis, a unifying campaign bringing together voters, faith leaders, labor unions, businesses, and more because we have an opportunity to create a system that works for all of us.
We know that no matter what we look like or where we live, we all want our loved ones to come home safe and know we’re protected, respected and valued. After the Murder of George Floyd, the eyes of the world are on Minneapolis to find a way to bring about real change when it comes to policing.
Now change is on the ballot.
Minneapolis voters will have the chance to change the charter and create a Department of Public Safety, which will change the current police-only model of public safety andallow the City of Minneapolis a funded, accountable and comprehensive public health approach to public safety. This will allow us to be both proactive and responsive to the community, adding a range of strategies, right-sized responses, experts, professional personnel, and licensed peace officers (also known as, police officers), when necessary.
Our Union is on the cutting edge of building new ways to keep our communities safe, particularly with the Community Safety Specialist (CSS) program we are currently building out with local partner organizations. We know we can do better because our communities already have innovative, safe, inclusive ways to care for each other. But we can’t make those changes with the current status quo.
Voting “Yes for Minneapolis” would create a comprehensive public health approach to public safety, so that all of us, no matter what we look like or which neighborhood we live in, have an equal opportunity to live safely and securely. Minneapolis politicians and police have long failed to address the race-based harm and violence that continue to plague the Police Department, and the 1961 city charter has blocked any real structural reform. It’s time to remove the barriers to a new era in public safety where the police work alongside qualified professionals, like mental health responders and social workers, to make all our communities safer.
The current model of policing isn’t working. Police violence is evident while communities are also seeing overall violence on the rise, 9-1-1 response times differ based on your neighborhood, and we still have not addressed the root causes of crime and violence, like poverty, unstable housing, and inequitable access to good schools. It’s time to establish a model of public safety that is more humane, includes professionals who are trained in mental health issues and crisis de-escalation, and treats all members of the community equally, regardless of race or class.
We all deserve a safe, welcoming community. We’re excited to be part of the work with our partners in Yes for Minneapolis to make this a reality.