MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – After a report detailed findings of racial bias in the Minneapolis Police Department, members of the Unity in Community Mediation Team met with Interim Chief Amelia Huffman to push forward the agenda of safety and justice for all.
For the past two years, the Unity in Community Mediation Team met weekly with the Chief of Police, MPD command staff, and the Police Federation to improve community safety, but the relationship goes back decades.
“The unity in community mediation team has been fighting back since 2003 about some of these same issues that never got addressed,” said Al Flowers.
The report released by the Minnesota Department of Human Rights pinpointing problems with racially biased policing by MPD is nothing new to this team: they’ve been fighting to bring attention to disparities in policing for years.
WEB EXTRA: Read the full report.
“This report is not a surprise to us but we have to do more than protest and point fingers we have to sit at the table,” said Rev. Ian Bethel.
The original document that addressed these issues, spearheaded by the late Clyde Bellecourt and Ron Edwards is being improved upon to address the concerns of a community and police department.
“They have been at this table for 20 years this work is urgent and it’s incumbent to us to get it right, “ said Huffman.
Huffman says the number of officers who voluntarily spoke with Human Rights investigators proves they are committed to change and want what’s best for the city and those who serve its residents.
“They did ride along in every precinct, they interviewed many officers who were anxious to explain their perspectives and talks about their feelings,” said Huffman.
She believes pushing forward the work of the Unity in Community Mediation Team will only help the city heal and grow stronger, together.
‘This is part of building trust the trust that’s foundational to our relationships to our ability to engage with community members across the city and collaborate to make Minneapolis safer and more peaceful for everyone,” said Huffman.
Huffman says MPD and the Unity in Community team have agreed that the sanctity of life is priority one.
Bethel has asked Mayor Jacob Frey to create a Police Community Relations Council to help the city and MPD navigate the consent decree passed down from the Department of Human rights.
Source : https://minnesota.cbslocal.com/2022/04/28/unity-in-community-mediation-team-meets-with-mpd-chief-after-scathing-report/