#ReclaimThe414: DIVEST FROM MILWAUKEE POLICE DEPARTMENT

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We, as young women of color who have grown up in Milwaukee, are demanding that Mayor Barrett and Milwaukee Common Council commit to divesting from the Milwaukee Police Department.

We are demanding that Mayor Barrett makes a commitment to being anti-racist. Mayor Barrett has been in office for most of our lifetime. We have grown up in one of the most economically and historically oppressed cities for Black people. We have grown up in schools with metal detectors but without textbooks. 

However, we have also seen the Milwaukee Police Department in full riot gear. They have thrown tear gas at civilians in the middle of a pandemic and into neighborhoods that already experience environmental racism. If MPD cared about the people they are supposed to serve and protect, they would not shoot rubber bullets at protestors. 

There is no reforming a system that is historically anti-Latinx, anti-Indigenous, and anti-Black. Reforms have been tried, and they have failed. Mayor Barrett, our Common Council, and all of our elected officials must work to defund MPD. This not only means cutting the police budget by 10%, but also reducing the power of police unions, firing officers that have a history of excessive force complaints, and requiring MPD to pay for settlements, not taxpayers

We secondly demand that all metal detectors be removed from our schools, allocating that money for restorative justice practices. The practice of suspending and expelling students must end. Milwaukee Public Schools must cut their ties with the Milwaukee Police Department

We are demanding that Milwaukee invests in our future. Invest in our teachers. Invest in mental health resources and trauma informed care. Invest in youth. We are calling on our elected leaders to support an adaption of Portland’s Care Not Cops initiative. Milwaukee’s budget must be focused on redistribution and dismantling economic and racial oppression. For too long, Black and Brown folks have suffered. Enough is Enough. 

We would like to remind Mayor Barrett that women of color are the backbone of Milwaukee, and if he does not meet our demands, we will mobilize against him. It is time that we, as young people #ReclaimThe414.

We ask that those who share our vision of a fair and equitable Milwaukee sign our petition to show our electeds that it is time to divest from MPD.