MINNEAPOLIS – The unelected Minneapolis Charter Commission voted 10-5 today to delay acting on a proposed charter amendment. That means residents won’t get to decide during the November election how to change policing.
The charter commission delayed taking action for 90 more days, making it impossible to get the issue on the November ballot. The amendment would replace the Minneapolis Police Department with a Department of Community Safety and Violence Prevention that may include licensed peace officers.
“People in Minneapolis overwhelmingly say they want real and meaningful change following the police murder of George Floyd,” said ACLU-MN Executive Director John Gordon. “The Charter Commission’s choice to delay a decision today will prevent voters from achieving change and deciding the future of policing in their own city this November. The ACLU-MN will work with our partners and community members to ensure we can create a truly just system that is not based on our racist system of policing and mistreatment of People of Color.”
A recent poll by the ACLU and The Fairness Project found 61% of Minneapolis residents, including 70% of Black community members, support the charter amendment. Following the police murder of George Floyd and protests around our city, 86% said it was clear that Minneapolis needs to make real and meaningful changes to its police department. Redirecting some of the $193 million Minneapolis spends on policing to social and health services also had strong support at 79%.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to protecting and promoting the civil liberties of all Minnesotans.