Last Wednesday night, community members filled both Minneapolis and St. Paul City Halls to demand police accountability and safety beyond policing. At the same time St. Paul residents successfully pressured their City Council to remove police from the civilian review board, in Minneapolis we successfully secured $1.5 million for safety beyond policing strategies in next year's budget. Though $2 million to hire additional police also passed in the budget, we were able to lay the groundwork for alternate community safety strategies in Minneapolis.
Dozens of NOC members testified for alternate community safety measures and against additional spending for police.
Safety beyond policing items proposed by Mayor Hodges that ultimately passed:
- $185,000 in ongoing funding to the Health Department for Group Violence Intervention and Youth Violence Prevention aid and funding to community partners.
- $261,000 in ongoing funding and more money one time to create a 3-person mental health co-responder pilot at the Minneapolis Police Department
- $500,000 in one time funds to invest in community-directed alternative safety strategies in West Broadway and Little Earth
- $250,000 taken from Meet Minneapolis to fund alternative community safety strategies through the Downtown Improvement District (proposed by Goodman)
- $67,000 taken from Fire Department and Public Health fund to fund Youth Violence Prevention through the Health Department (proposed by Bender)
- $50,000 taken from the City Coordinator to fund Culturally Relevant Sex Trafficking Prevention Work through Health Department (proposed by Cano)
- $100,000 taken from the Police Special Revenue Fund to fund alternative community safety strategies in Phillips West and Ventura Village (proposed by Warsame)
- $100,000 taken from City Attorney's office to fund Hate Crimes Investigator at Civil Rights Department (proposed by Glidden)
These budget wins wouldn't have happened if it weren't for community demanding safety beyond policing in the Minneapolis budget. Thank you to everyone who came to a meeting, testified, spoke out for safety beyond policing, or contacted your council member. We'll keep building on this budget success toward community safety beyond policing in the months and years to come.
Ramsey County Attorney John Choi's decision to charge Officer Jeronimo Yanez with second degree manslaughter for the death of Philando Castile as well as felony charges in endangering the safety of Diamond Reynolds and her four-year-old daughter comes as a welcome relief and a historically significant step toward police accountability in Minnesota.Read more
Neighborhoods Organizing for Change (“NOC”) is hiring a full-time political director to lead on the front-lines of building political power towards justice in under-resourced communities and communities of color. NOC is in a moment of extraordinary growth and momentum, and we seek a high-level, experienced individual with a commitment to movement-building and grassroots leadership.
The NOC political director will harness the energy of NOC’s dynamic community work to build a political program that integrates and connects issue campaigns, electoral politics and grassroots organizing. We seek a long-term strategic thinker who understands politics as a means to build power for under-resourced communities and communities of color. This political director will be responsible for co-visioning, designing, and winning leader-driven campaigns to elect accountable community members to office, directing an efficient and fiscally sound PAC infrastructure and broadly advancing issues of racial and economic justice.
This is a full-time senior staff position with competitive compensation relative to experience and ability and to include excellent benefits. To apply please send electronic cover letter, resume and three references attention Anthony Newby, Executive Director, care of email@example.com with the subject line POLITICAL DIRECTOR.Read more
On July 19th, hundreds of educators from around the country, along with community allies, stood in solidarity with members of the Saint Paul Federation of Teachers and the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers in taking direct action following the unjust killing by police of their colleague and friend Philando Castile. Thirteen days following Castile’s death, educators demanded community safety beyond policing from our schools to the streets. Minneapolis police arrested 21 educators, parents, and clergy during the course of the march.
So much of this work toward community safety beyond policing starts in the classroom. Educators have been pushing for prioritizing counselors over cops, restorative justice over suspensions and expulsions, meeting the basic needs of our students in full-service community schools, and allowing students and parents to have a say in how the school is run. These methods that prioritize mental health, positive development, and community control can also be a model for what community safety beyond police can look like.
THAT'S MY ENGLISH TEACHER RIGHT IN FRONT https://t.co/6CAT78kfUb— ally (@_appelmom) July 20, 2016
TO: RAMSEY COUNTY ATTORNEY JOHN CHOI
UPDATE: After being held for nearly 72 hours, all protesters were released thanks to your support. Most are being charged with gross misdemeanor riot, and one has been charged with felony second degree riot. Please donate for legal support for these freedom fighters.
46 protesters, including youth, union members, faith leaders of all creeds, and activists of all ages, races, and geographies, are being held in police custody on outrageous gross misdemeanor riot charges. Each is being held on a minimum of $1,500 bail for blocking traffic to demand justice, after being attacked indiscriminately by St. Paul Police and the State Patrol with tear gas, pepper spray, and rubber bullets. Meanwhile, the officer who killed Philando Castile in cold blood is on a taxpayer-sponsored paid vacation. We're partnering with Black Lives Matter Minneapolis to get these freedom fighters out of jail -- and we need your help.Read more
Neighborhoods Organizing for Change
1101 W Broadway Ave #100
Minneapolis, MN 55411
July 7, 2016
As board members and leaders of Minnesota Neighborhoods Organizing for Change (NOC), our hearts are heavy today, and continue to break as we learn about and react to the senseless murder of Philando Castile by an officer of the St. Anthony police force.Read more
You can see the full United Black Legislative Agenda here.
Leaders from across the Black community today unveiled a United Black Legislative Agenda with concrete recommendations to address Minnesota's painful racial disparities. Gov. Mark Dayton has pledged $100 million to address these racial disparities, which are among the worst in the nation.
"We are at a pivotal moment in this state, both with some of the largest racial disparities in the country, and in a movement when Black people from communities across the state are demanding not only equal treatment but equal opportunity and equal investment," said Anthony Newby, executive director of Neighborhoods Organizing for Change. "The legislature had three priorities starting out this session: Real ID, Iron Range unemployment, and racial disparities. The first two have been addressed. Today, organizations from across the Black community have come together in an unprecedented way to present the United Black Legislative Agenda in a pragmatic proposal to improve the quality of life for Black Minnesotans."Read more
We are deeply disappointed at today's non-indictment of the police officers who executed Jamar Clark, which sends a clear message that the Minneapolis police may act as judge, jury, and executioner in interactions with unarmed black men.
County Attorney Mike Freeman's account of his refusal to charge officers Mark Ringgenberg and Dustin Schwarze relies heavily on the testimony of officers Ringgenberg and Schwarze themselves, taking their testimony as gospel truth; disregards witness testimony, inconsistencies within the police account, and video evidence of police aggression; and uses dog-whistle language to describe the officers' fear of a 24-year-old black man.