MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – The Minneapolis City Council has approved a court-enforceable agreement with the Minnesota Department of Human Rights to reform the Minneapolis Police Department. Now the city must immediately take steps to implement this order.
ACLU-MN Legal Director Teresa Nelson has this statement:
“We should all remember that this settlement agreement results from the state’s extensive investigation and comprehensive findings that the Minneapolis Police Department engages in a pattern or practice of discriminatory policing caused primarily by an organizational culture where there is a lack of appropriate training, accountability, and leadership. We are hopeful that by adopting and vigorously implementing many of the evidence-based reforms in the settlement that MPD’s culture of race-based policing will change. While the agreement is an important first step, the city must embrace many more reforms to truly transform the department.”
This agreement lays out needed changes and a timeline for making them. It follows the murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police.
The settlement agreement came about after a Minnesota Department of Human Rights investigation found that MPD was more likely to use force, stop and search vehicles, issue citations, and arrest people of color and Indigenous individuals than white people. The report details widespread use of racist and misogynistic language.
The investigation also found MPD was still holding paramilitary-style training that encouraged officers to be aggressive toward community members and to escalate situations; and allowing police with substantiated claims of excessive force to remain as training officers.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that promotes, protects, and extends the civil liberties and civil rights of people in Minnesota through litigation, lobbying, and community engagement. Learn more at aclu-mn.org.