MINNEAPOLIS (FOX 9) Nine members of the Minneapolis City Council announced their support for de-funding the Minneapolis Police Department and replacing it with a community-based public safety model at a rally in Powderhorn Park Sunday afternoon.
At the end of the rally, the councilmembers and some community activisits committed to ending the Minneapolis Police Department through the budget process. The group also announced its intention to engage every willing community member to ask what safety means to them and ceate a “new transformative model for cultivating safety.”
Minneapolis City Council President Lisa Bender, Council Vice President Andrea Jenkins, and Council Members Alondra Cano, Jeremiah Ellison, Steve Fletcher, Cam Gordon and Jeremy Schroeder joined activists from Black Visions Collective and Reclaim the Block for the announcement.
With the support of the nine councilmembers, they have created a veto-proof supermajority in support of disbanding the police department.
“It is clear that our system of policing is not keeping our communities safe,” said Bender. “Our efforts at incremental reform have failed, period.”
Bender went on to say she and the eight other councilmembers that joined the rally are committed to ending the city’s relationship with the police force and “to end policing as we know it and recreate systems that actually keep us safe.”
Councilmember Ellison said frankly, “This council is going to dismantle this police department.”
Similarly, Councilmember Cano said the council would “abolish the Minneapolis Police system as we know it.”
Said Councilmember Phillippe Cunningham of the community-based policing alternative the councilors are proposing, “All of that money is going to the police department and what do we have in return? Pain, trauma and hurt”
At the end of the rally, the crowd gathered at Powderhorn Park began a chant of “De-fund, MPD.”
There are a total of 12 Minneapolis City Councilmembers. A majority of them now support ending the city’s relationship with the MPD.
Notably, Mayor Jacob Frey did not attend the rally Sunday. He was booed at a de-fund the police rally in Minneapolis Saturday afternoon.