Los Angeles Will Not Increase Police Budget, Try to Identify $250 Million in Cuts to Invest in Black Community

Ameera Butt
June 03, 2020 - 6:44 pm

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced the city will not be increasing its police budget during a briefing Wednesday afternoon.

"We need to make a firm commitment to change," he said. "We need to make sure black Americans see an end to the days of murder in broad daylight and traffic stops simply because of the color of their skin."

He said he has instructed the city council, through the City Administrative Officer, will try to identify $250 million in cuts to every department, including the police department, to invest in jobs, education "and healing" adding the money will be focused on helping the black community.

He also announced a new civil and human rights department tasked to protecting Angelenos and an office of racial equity within the department.

Garcetti said the Police Commission will issue a moratorium on putting people into CalGang database, require officers to intervene when they see the inappropriate use of force and call for more anti-bias training.

There have been a slew of demonstrations and protests and -- and four days of curfews city and countywide - in recent days in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd at the hands of a white police officer in police custody. All four police officers will now face charges.

As recently as today, the protests in downtown LA, Hollywood and elsewhere were all peaceful.

The reduction in police budget comes numerous calls for a reduction in recent days.

Just today, three City Council members filed a motion to cut the budget by $100 million to $150 million for the 2020-2021 fiscal year.

 "We need to rethink what it is that makes people safer and makes communities stronger. We cannot just look at the police in isolation," the motion stated in a City News Service story. "There is no doubt that communities of color suffer disproportionately from negative interactions with the police."

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