This week’s “Community thru Covid” on We Act Radio looks at the intersection of health risks from the novel corona virus and police violence. We’ll explore how Covid-19 is affecting response to DC’s FY21 police and safety budget. We’ll also discuss choices individuals and families are making around protest exposure to Covid-19 and what households can do to manage health risks at home, while one or more members take to the streets.
GUESTS TODAY: Naiya Speight-Leggett, Dominique Hazzard, and Kendra Allen from BYP100 (Black Youth Project).
POLICE/SAFETY BUDGET: Testimony under Covid
As individuals and organizations prepare to testify to the DC Council in the new Covid-19 format, we have asked the Mayor’s office to share details behind her FY21 budget choices:
City Administrator Rashad Young said cuts to Cure Violence were intended to fund another program. We seek
- details of the new program,
- data behind the proposed switch,
- details of interactions with community members prior to this budget choice,
- and planning with community leaders around potential transitioning to a new violence interruption program.
BLACK LIVES MATTERS: Celebration and Demands
We also seek information about the administration’s responses to long-standing BLM DC demands:
- When will the names of officers involved in the shooting of Marqueese Alston be released?
- What about the body cam footage in that case?
And, in light of the recent public celebrations of Black Lives Matter, we have asked the mayor’s office if there are any plans to re-examine complaints against MPD of harassment and surveillance of BLM organizers.
Street Painting = Change of Budget Plans?
Perhaps the street painting means that the Mayor’s views on policing and public safety have changed and she will be adjusting the budget accordingly? We’ll attempt to find out and we’ll get updates from some of those working on the local #DefundMPD campaign.