Bringing the power to the people at the 23rd Annual SLACO Regional Neighborhoods Conference, 2/2/19
I. INVEST IN REAL PUBLIC SAFETY
It’s paramount that we move away from the failed model of ‘arrest and incarcerate’ policing to one that redefines public safety as ensuring the stability of neighborhoods, families and individuals.
This can be accomplished by applying remedies to poverty, and other causes of crime, by resolving the root issues of crime. To that end providing jobs, safe housing, affordable healthcare, schools equipped to address all student’s needs, and much more, will bring about the change needed in the 18th ward.
I support the Coalition Against Police Crimes and Repression’s campaign to make St. Louis safe by divesting in the police and reinvesting in real public safety in order to provide services addressing the root cause of crime - poverty.
II. LOCAL CONTROL OF THE POLICE
In 2013 control of the police was transferred from Jeff City to the people of St. Louis. As alderperson of the 18th ward one of my initiatives will be to further develop the Board’s role in this new structure. I believe the Board of Aldermen should provide more vigorous oversight to make sure police practices are fair and effective.
III. CIVILIAN OVERSIGHT OF THE POLICE
The Civilian Oversight Board (COB) was established in 2015. As alder I want to ensure that the COB lives up to its mandate of civilian oversight and transparency.
I recognize the COB needs to be more engaged with the community by providing Town Halls and other outreach efforts to inform the community of its presence and mandate.
The COB has the ability to audit police policies and procedures. This is a vital function of the COB because it goes to the heart of addressing toxic police culture. A high priority is an audit of the Civilian Disobedience Team, SWAT/Mobile Reserve and the Force Investigative Unit.
I support the creation of a Department of Civilian Oversight (DCO). Currently the Public Safety Director is in charge of both the police department and the COB which poses an appearance of conflict of interest. In order for the COB to be truly independent it needs to be separated in its entirety from the police department.
The DCO could also house the Force Investigative Unit, which investigates police shootings,making it independent of the police department. The DCO could also create and house an Office of Jail Oversight.
IV. SURVEILLANCE CAMERAS
Research has determined that providing street lights is as effective, if not more effective, than providing surveillance cameras in deterring crime. Nonetheless, a surveillance network is already in place through the coordination of business cameras and the police department. The creation of the Real Time Intelligence Center (RTIC) threatens our privacy, risks further police targeting of African Americans, and spends enormous amounts of money that could go into effective ward projects.
At a minimum, it is crucial that legislative oversight is established to protect the privacy of individuals and determine the effectiveness of the RTIC. I support Privacy Watch STL’s bill to establish this oversight.
V. POLICE BODY CAMERAS
Body cameras may in theory provide some police accountability, but they also have the potential of becoming walking 24/7 government surveillance. If we implement body cams, we need policies to make sure their use is focused on accountability. I support the model policies created for St. Louis by Drone Free St. Louis: http://bit.ly/BodyCamPolicy
VI. RACIAL PROFILING
Missouri passed a racial profiling bill in 2000, but Black drivers in St. Louis are still twice as likely as whites to be stopped while driving, 44% more likely to be searched and 50% more likely to be arrested. We need the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department to stop this disparity of treatment. We also need to stop profiling pedestrians (walking while black). Residents of the 18th ward have a right to be safe in our own neighborhoods, to drive to work or walk to the corner store without being harrassed. I also support passage of a stronger bill in Jeff City to end racial profiling: http://bit.ly/RacialProfilingBill
VII. ETHICAL SOCIETY OF POLICE [ESOP]
I support ESOP and their efforts to expose racist, abusive, unprofessional police behavior and practices. While I support moving away from relying on the police and shifting to a stronger social services approach to crime, I recognize that there is also a need to shift the police culture from within. ESOP is bravely stepping up to the plate and pushing to make these necessary changes.
For Immediate Release: January 25, 2019
NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri PAC Endorses Pro-Choice Fighters for Election to St. Louis Board of Aldermen
ST. LOUIS, MO -- NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri PAC endorsed a slate of pro-choice fighters for the St. Louis Board of Aldermen today. Endorsements include the following:
Robert Dillard for Ward 4
Pat Hickey for Ward 10
Tony Pecinovsky for Ward 14
Jeffery “Dhoruba” Hill for Ward 18
Tonya Finley-McCaw for Ward 22
Lorie Cavin for Ward 24
Danny Sample for Ward 24
Jake Banton for Ward 26
“We are very excited to announce our endorsements in races across St. Louis,” said NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri PAC Board Chair Christine Shore-Fitzgerald. “These candidates will be great additions to the Board of Aldermen and will be fighters for reproductive freedom in their respective wards.”
“I’m very proud to have the endorsement and support of the NARAL PAC for Alderman of St. Louis City’s 4th ward,” said Robert Dillard. “I look forward to working closely with NARAL to ensure and maintain the security of women’s rights.”
“I am humbled to have the endorsement of NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri,” said Pat Hickey. “As alderman, I will work to protect women's access to reproductive health care options and ensure housing options and job security are not threatened due to personal medical decisions. More than ever, human rights issues are at the forefront of the political debate on the local level and I will not forget my responsibility to advance the cause of justice wherever I can.”
"I'm proudly pro-choice. Period. I trust women. Period. What a woman chooses to do with her body, is her choice. Period,” said Tony Pecinovsky. “I will fight in City Hall and in the community to protect and expand women's rights. This isn't something I'm willing to compromise on. I'm proud and honored to have NARAL's endorsement.”
"I'm very grateful for the NARAL endorsement, and I look forward to working to protect women's rights in the 18th Ward and in the City of St. Louis," said Jeffery “Dhoruba” Hill.
"The 22nd Ward deserve someone who will be a champion for workers’ rights, smart community development, a fighter for women’s reproductive rights, and a bridge builder between the police and the community. That champion is me!” said Tonya Finley-McCaw.
“I support every woman's choice to make decisions concerning her own body, safely and privately,” said Lorie Cavin. “As alderwoman, I will support women and their healthcare choices by voting for bills that protect her access and privacy while obtaining the care she needs.”
“As the 24th Ward Democratic Committeeman and a fierce activist for women’s pro-choice rights, I am thankful to receive NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri’s endorsement for 24th Ward Alderman and will always join their fight to support and protect, as a fundamental right and value, a woman's freedom to make personal decisions regarding the full range of reproductive choices through education, training, organizing, legal action, and public policy in the City of Saint Louis and beyond,” said Danny Sample.
"In a state where women's constitutional rights are constantly under attack, it is important for St. Louis to be a beacon of support,” said Jake Banton. “I am thrilled to have NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri's endorsement and will work hard to ensure that St. Louis continues to be a place where women are free to make their own decisions about their health and well-being."