Tell City Manager to Bring In Progressive Police Leadership
Dear City Manager Cronk,
I ask that you immediately move to replace Austin's public safety leadership with people ready to dig in and make long needed reforms. APD needs new leadership to:
- properly train in de-escalation, demilitarize the culture and instill the sanctity of all life as a core value,
- address the ongoing problem of racism in the department,
- end arrest and jail for marijuana possession and other minor infractions,
- use alternative first responders to calls related to mental illness and homelessness,
- improve sex crime investigation and management of the crime lab, and
- ensure APD cooperation with Austin's civilian police oversight office.
Community organizations, the Mayor and City Council have called for these and many other reforms for years now, with little progress and much backsliding.
Right now, you need to begin the search for a new police Chief and a new civilian leader for the public safety departments. While you conduct that search, you must cancel the July police Academy until a full review of current training is complete and new curricula are in place.
I look forward to hearing your response,