A Chicago mayoral candidate is pledging to destroy the city’s gang database, citing the number of minorities listed in the database as an example of racism.
In an interview with the Chicago-Sun Times, Chicago mayoral candidate and current Cook County PResident Tony Predwinkle elaborated on her “Building a Safer Chicago” platform, which includes a pledge to destroy the city’s gang database.
Preckwinkle says her plan to end the gang database is because it’s largely comprised of black and brown people though there’s “no criteria for how to get on it and many don’t know if they’re on it and there’s no way to get off of it.”
“It’s part of the culpability of the Police Department,” Preckwinkle said. “People don’t know how they got there and it’s used to damage their lives. That’s a real challenge to police-community relations.”
Predwinkle’s plan would also freeze $95 million in spending for a new police a fire academy, instead using the money to retrain police officers with more lax standards. Predwinkle would also eliminate the job of Chicago’s Police Superintendent, and would increase funding into the Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy in an effort to build trust in the community.
This platform comes at a time when Chicago has been plagued with extreme violence. In 2018, in spite of Chicago’s total number of homicides dropping by 15 percent, and shootings by 18 percent, the city remained the number one city for homicides in the United States. In one weekend last year, 61 residents of Chicago were shot, with 8 dying from their injuries. This week, local media in Chicago celebrated a rare day with no reported gun violence.
The city also made headlines late last year when a Chicago activist was shot while live streaming himself canvas for a political candidate on Facebook Live.
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