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Fire and Police Commission needs youth, diversity

The Police Accountability Workgroup sent the following to Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and copied the Common Council and Fire and Police Commission Board of Directors.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin defends the civil liberties and rights of all Wisconsin residents and, as you know, has worked on policing matters for many years.

We convene a police accountability workgroup composed of community-based organizations from across Milwaukee.

We expect that you will be considering up to three new candidates for appointment to the Milwaukee Fire and Police Commission Board of Directors and we strongly encourage you to nominate individuals who possess several of the following attributes:

• Are under 35 years old and have knowledge about and experience with the issues young people are facing.

• Represent targeted populations that have high degrees of police contact.

• The ability to analyze data and think critically.

• The ability to ask difficult questions of authority figures.

• The ability to advocate for the community regarding police issues in the city of Milwaukee and work with diverse constituencies, i.e., the Milwaukee Police Department, Fire and Police Commission, other elected officials, and the community, in an oversight role.

• Experience with human resources and critical skill sets, such as implicit bias training, de-escalation techniques and mental health issues.

• The ability to make policy and procedural recommendations, including creating or evaluating policies and procedures for an organization of more than 100 employees.

• The ability to develop and utilize outreach strategies to obtain input regarding Milwaukee Police Department policy and procedures and their impact on the community.

We also encourage you to hold public listening sessions with prospective commissioners before their appointment.

We believe it is necessary to assure the public that the board of the fire and police commission will be representative of them and responsive to their concerns.

To reiterate: We urge the Mayor to appoint three qualified individuals to the Board of Milwaukee’s Fire and Police Commission.

Thank you for your cooperation on behalf of the undersigned community leaders and organizational representatives: Chris Ahmuty, American Civil Liberties Union; Fred Royal, NAACP Milwaukee Branch; Coalition for Justice; Rev. Steve Jerbi, All Peoples Church; Black Student Union at MATC; The Dominican Center; Bishop Jeff Barrow, Greater Milwaukee Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in America; Hmong Human Rights; Martin Luther King Justice Coalition; Sr. Rose Stietz, MICAH; Milwaukee Christian Center; Milwaukee Public Theatre; Showing Up for Racial Justice – Milwaukee Branch; True Skool; Urban Underground; Voces de la Frontera; Wisconsin Black Historical Society; and YWCA Southeastern Wisconsin


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