ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – With growing tensions surrounding cases of police brutality across the country, more people are calling to defund police. Now some Albuquerque City Councilors are responding.
For the past two weeks, protestors have been hitting the streets across the country, including here in Albuquerque. The death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, sparking a massive conversation about systemic racism and police brutality.
Now people are demanding change, some are even calling for the defunding of police. This week, Albuquerque City Council President Pat Davis published a survey onlilne, asking people to weigh in on how they’d like to restructure APD’s budget. “I don’t think politicians should be making this decision alone,” said Davis.
The survey asks questions regarding how safe you feel in Albuquerque and what your most recent encounter with APD was like. Davis says it’s not about ‘abolishing APD,’ but rather making money adjustments.
“We have tacked on a lot over the years, to the police department that aren’t necessarily police functions,” said Davis “Everybody know’s we need a cop when there’s a shooting, but when there’s a mental health crisis, mental health workers should be first responders,” he said.
In a new Memorial, City Councilor Brook Bassan highlights why she believes it’s critical to support APD, and keep the approved budget as is. “Albuquerque is unique, Albuquerque is our home, it’s our city,” said Bassan, “And Albuquerque Police Officers are doing an incredible job and have come a long way in the last five years,” said the recently elected City Councilor.
Bassan says taking money away from police would have serious consequences. “We’re not going to retain or obtain new officers who are good, and doing awesome things, if we’re not going to back them up and support them,” said Bassan.
Councilors will hold an APD budget hearing in July where they will review the suggestions made on the survey. The survey is available online.
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