Defund the Police - Invest in the People

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We as individuals recognize that it is long past time to take action and accountability for the racism and white supremacy within Frederick County and its institutions. It is your duty to act in a manner that ensures the safety and well being of all residents of Frederick county.

A general history of prioritizing police militarization, surveillance and security, over community care, investment, and leadership accountability has driven a wedge between the city and county government and the communities those councils are meant to serve.

We are calling on the city and county councils to Defund the Police and Re-Invest in our communities.

If you are a Frederick City or County resident, please sign on! 

Defund the Police:

1) Lower department budgets of both county and city police by 20%. Total of 40%.

2) Remove School Resource Officers from schools; replace them with counselors and teachers.

3) End 287g - end the Sheriff department's collaboration with ICE.

4) Demilitarize: NO police budget increases or expansion of capabilities or equipment.

5) Release of all non-violent offenders tried and convicted in Frederick County.

6) End/phase out local contracts with private prisons.

Invest in the People:

1) Invest in reentry programs for formerly incarcerated individuals.

2) Create a civilian review board with subpoena power, lead by members of specifically Black, Latinx, LGBTQIA+, immigrant, and impoverished communities.

3) Invest in immigrant communities by allocating money towards an undocumented COVID19 relief fund.

4) Fund alternative 911 responder options, such as mental health crisis teams and community health programs
 aimed at prevention and restoration not reaction and incarceration, utilizing the CAHOOTS program as an example. 

5) Establish truly affordable housing in Frederick County - cancel rent while COVID19 still ravages our communities and provide a forgiveness plan for those unable to make mortgage payments. 

6) De-gentrification - land acknowledgement of indigenous land; recognize and uplift local black and indigenous history; establish a de-colonial review board for the Historical Society of Frederick County (Heritage Frederick); and allocate additional funding for groups like the African-American Resources - Cultural Heritage society.

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It is unconscionable to publicly decry the murder and targeted over-policing of Black communities, and at the same time vote to raise the budget of the very institutions at fault.

It is wrong to announce you are working on solving the issue of affordable housing while at the same criminalizing homelessness and doing nothing to prevent the looming wave of mass evictions due to COVID19 job-loss. It is hypocritical of you to decry and mourn the loss of life due to the heroin epidemic, but then also continue criminalizing drug addiction and usage. All of these inconsistencies have a disproportionately negative impact on already economically and culturally marginalized communities.

MORE INFORMATION:

County Budget: 
Sheriff’s Department total budget: $51 million (pg 141)
Detention Center: $16.6 million (pg 147)
Citizen’s Services: $22 million
Housing: $13 million
Family Partnership: $2.1 million
Health Services: $8.2 million (pg 235)
School Health Program: $330,000 (pg 235)
Parks and Rec: $11 million

Source: https://frederickcountymd.gov/66/Budget-Office

City Budget:
Housing and Human Services: $8.2 million down from $8.5 million last year (pg 33)
FCAA: $6.4 million down from $6.6 million (pg 33)
FPD: $35.7 million, up from $33.5 million

Source: https://www.cityoffrederickmd.gov/DocumentCenter/View/17880/Mayors-Proposed-FY-2021-Budget-Executive-Summary?bidId=

Over-Targeting of Black Youth:
Black students and other students of color in Frederick County, MD are:

1) Twice as likely as their white peers to be referred to juvenile court.

2) Twice as likely as their white peers to have “cases involving secure detention.”

3) Almost half as likely as their white peers to have their cases diverted to alternative programs.

4) 90% of DJS intakes/complaints were submitted by police officers, including SROs and School Police.

Frederick County is the only county in MD to have statistically significant racial disparities in 6 out of the 8 contact points DJS tracks racial disparity in. No other county in Maryland had documented racial disparities in as many categories.

Source: Department of Juvenile Services https://djs.maryland.gov/Documents/DRG/Data_Resource_Guide_FY2019_.pdf