It’s been a year since former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin killed George Floyd. Floyd’s murder sparked a local, national and global outcry that fueled protests calling for an end to anti-Black racism and an overhaul of policing.
While the movement has brought renewed awareness to police brutality, the protests have caused somewhat of a split among those calling for police reforms and those seeking fundamental changes to the way policing is conducted, particularly in historically Black neighborhoods where, as local activist D.A. Bullock puts it, residents feel “over-policed and under-protected.”
Tuesday, host Kerri Miller talked with Bullock and Sondra Samuels, a community leader who is part of a group of residents suing the Minneapolis Police Department over inadequate police protection due to a shortage of officers. They discussed what changes Floyd’s murder has brought about and which efforts are still in progress.
As you listen to the conversation, here’s some additional context about Minneapolis crime and policing:
Minneapolis has seen an increase in violent crime over the past year or so, and it’s been attributed to a variety of factors. Many other U.S. cities have also seen increases. As of earlier this month, 22 children had been struck by gunfire in Minneapolis so far this year.
The city of Minneapolis continues its journey toward a public safety solution. In December, the City Council voted to maintain current police staffing but shift some funding to other violence prevention efforts. Police staffing numbers have been down this year. The question about the future of the city’s police department is expected to go before voters this fall.
Recent reports have raised questions about the Minneapolis Police Department collaborating on public messaging with some community groups that are against defunding the police.
Sondra Samuels is president and CEO of the Northside Achievement Zone (NAZ).
D.A. Bullock is a north Minneapolis resident, filmmaker, local activist and member of Reclaim the Block’s communications team.
To listen to the full conversation you can use the audio player above.
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